Star City Wastewater Treatment Plant Improvements
2023 Engineering Excellence Best of State
Entering Firm: Strand Associates Inc.
Client: Morgantown Utility Board
Morgantown’s main wastewater treatment plant was in trouble. It could not meet growing capacity demands and aging facilities could not handle increased environmental standards. The plant sits on a very narrow piece of property and frequent storm overflows pushed dirty water into the adjacent Monongahela River.
Designing on a Postage Stamp
Strand Associates knew that their design solutions had to fit on the constrained parcel of property the plant currently occupies. A new preliminary treatment building and improved inflow pumps increased plant capacity by over 20 percent. A 100-foot-tall digester helps conserve space while still meeting the plant’s needs for decades. Alongside other mechanical upgrades, this new capacity will fix the storm overflows and allow for continued growth in the region.
One of the design team’s unique solutions was replacing the 30-year-old biological reactors. New membrane bioreactors are smaller than the old equipment and fit neatly in the space allowed. The membrane system is on the cutting edge of processing so the plant can meet current and future expected environmental regulations.
Awards judge Tom Buchholz said “The Star City Wastewater Treatment Plant improvements demonstrate solid engineering skills that balance the needs of the project within in its tight environmental constraints. Strand Associates developed solutions of membrane bioreactors and concrete silo digester to fit between the banks of the Monongahela River and the popular multi-modal Caperton Trail. Strand Associates’ work to meet future needs…is an engineering project to celebrate”.
A Sustainable Solution
The newly renovated facility has a design plan that takes it through 2055. It can amply handle current and future growth and more than meets the needs of the client.