Pure Water San Diego Program Achieves Milestone

Aug. 12, 2020

A NPDES permit was granted to San Diego by the Regional Water Quality Control Board to add purified water to the Miramar Reservoir 

The City of San Diego's $3 billion Pure Water San Diego Program achieved a significant milestone. 

A National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit was granted to the City by the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board to add purified water to the Miramar Reservoir for Phase 1 of the Program, according to Brown and Caldwell.

The Pure Water San Diego Program is a multi-year program that aims to help San Diego, California overcome its water challenges by transforming the existing water system into a complete water cycle. This would maximize the use and reuse of its water supply and reduce ocean discharges. 

“Water supply is perhaps the most critical issue that San Diego must continue to address given its semi-arid climate and reliance on imported supplies,” said San Diego Public Utilities Department Assistant Director John Stufflebean. “Pure Water San Diego is an essential component to ensure the long-term health and vibrancy of one of the world’s most desirable places to live.”

Phase 1 of the program includes a series of facilities and pipelines to clean recycled water to produce 30 million gallons per day (MGD) of high-quality purified water, according to the city of San Diego. The purified water will blend with the city’s imported and local water sources and be re-treated at the Miramar Water Treatment Plant before distribution to the public. 

The NPDES permit issued to the city is the first for a reservoir augmentation project in California and a major milestone for the Pure Water San Diego Program, according to the city. The Stantec/Brown and Caldwell team is providing program management services to support the City with Phase 1 of the Program from planning through implementation.

“Our team applauds the city of San Diego’s leadership team on this significant milestone for this important, high-profile program,” said Stantec Consultant Program Manager Doug Owen. “Pure Water San Diego and the city’s vision to create a new, sustainable water supply for generations to come is a foundational model for future potable reuse projects.”

Early site work construction activities at the North City Water Reclamation Plant and the future Pure Water Facility are currently underway as part of Phase 1 of the Program.

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Cristina Tuser