Tampa Bay Desal, developer of the largest seawater desalination plant in the United States has agreed to transfer ownership of said plant to Tampa Bay Water, a regional water utility.
In addition to being the largest seawater facility, the plant represented a major departure from "business as usual" in the water industry. This is the first time a major utility has relied upon the private sector to invest in infrastructure development of this technology and scale. This project represents a true public-private partnership.
The agreement between Tampa Bay Desal and Tampa Bay Water requires that ownership be transferred to the government at any time. The plant, which is nearly 60 percent complete, has overcome a number of significant challenges. As a consequence, Tampa Bay Water elected to exercise the buyout clause in the Water Purchase Agreement.
Tampa Bay Water General Manager Jerry L. Maxwell calls the new realtionship a win-win-win. "Tampa Bay Desal and Poseidon Resources have added value to this project at every step. With the most significant risk behind us, were ready to take ownership and complete the project, while maintaining the integrity of a team with a three year track record of success."
Tampa Bay Desal will assume an advisory role as the project moves through final construction to water supply production. According to Maxwell, everything remains the same except ownership.
"Were pleased to transfer a project thats on time and on budget," said Tim Defoe, project manager, Tampa Bay Desal. "This unique approach on this special project has broken new ground in the water industry. Were pleased to provide ongoing value to Tampa Bay Water.
Tampa Bay Water is the largest wholesale water supplier in Florida, providing high-quality drinking water to its members, who in turn, supply water to nearly 2 million residents of the Tampa Bay area. Tampa Bay Water member governments include the cities of New Port Richey, St. Petersburg and Tampa, and the counties of Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas.
Tampa Bay Desal is an affiliate of Poseidon Resources is a private company that owns, operates and invests in water supply, wastewater and environmental infrastructure around the world.