Every innovation we now take for granted was once an idea awaiting realization.

The goal of this demonstration project for the West Valley Water District in Rialto, California, was to show that biological treatment is a cost-effective and sustainable way to remove commercially produced salts, called perchlorates, from groundwater.

An existing system at the wastewater treatment plant did not function well, and the district needed a new system that would bring local water quality within state guidelines. We designed and built the new solution, which treats 900,000 gallons per day and operates in parallel with the plant’s current treatment process. New chlorine contactor piping treats the water before it enters the district’s distribution system for potable water.

Underground, there were conflicts with utilities, but we quickly found workarounds and rerouted utilities at no cost to the district. We selectively removed panels and structural support to make it easier for a specialty contractor to install the large tanks in one piece on the tanks’ final footprint. 

We utilized our resources of being a market diverse contractor and called on our industrial division in Bakersfield who specializes in vessel fabrication to build a 10,000-gallon pressure vessel for the facility. Electricians from PCL Bakersfield who specialize in pressure vessel were also on hand to help install it. In all, under strict time constraints we added to the plant a biological treatment system, fixed-bed biofilter, new outdoor bulk chemical storage facility, chemical metering pumps, backwash supply and waste equalization tanks, and a new sanitary sewer line.

There’s a first time for everything, and in that spirit West Valley Water pioneered this new method of biological water treatment to best serve residents of Rialto. The system’s efficiency and ease of operation make it suitable for use by other communities that rely on groundwater affected by perchlorate contamination. 

Constructed by