The Baker Water Treatment Plant serves as the replacement for an abandoned plant that was removed from service. The project provides water-supply and water-system reliability to the service areas of the Irvine Ranch Water District and four other local water agencies. The new 28 MGD membrane bioreactor surface water treatment plant is also utilized to provide a consistent water source to residents during emergencies. The plant uses advanced microfiltration treatment technology that meets standards stricter than current regulatory requirements, which means a consistent, high-quality source of drinking water.
In addition to new construction, the new plant was integrated with some of the existing plant's facilities. Construction included a finished water pump station, a solids dewatering facility, chemical building, and chlorine contact tank. PCL installed five miles of buried pipe within the new plant and one-half mile of buried 36-inch welded CMLC steel pipe in the surrounding street. PCL also installed valve vaults, blow-offs, and test stations, and performed a shutdown of a major 66-inch water main to tie in the new plant’s 36-inch finished water discharge pipeline.
The project team’s ability to arrive at cost-effective solutions without diminishing the original design intent or overall quality was evident on this project. The design for the 36-inch water line conveying treated water from the plant into distribution included a 330 LF jack-and-bore section. It was to be installed via jack-and-bore owing to the owner’s concerns about impact to a public trail and potential conflict with crossing utilities. However, PCL proposed installing the segment of 36-inch line through a traditional dig/lay/bury method instead. PCL took the lead in potholing all of the crossing utilities and creating a computer model to determine a viable route for the new water line that would stay within the confines of the intended alignment. PCL’s proposition was accepted and it resulted in a lower cost to the owner and reduced impact to the public, with a shorter duration for work activities occurring in the public trail.