The city of Paso Robles is getting closer to finalizing plans for a treatment plant needed to make its share of Nacimiento Lake water drinkable.
Design of the treatment plant is 90 percent complete, and construction is slated to begin next year, according to a staff report prepared for Tuesday's City Council meeting. The council will consider awarding a construction management contract at the meeting.
Construction of the plant’s first phase is expected to cost about $11.5 million, according to the report.
The plant, expected to be operating in 2015, will include structures to house operations, equipment and chemicals; physical and chemical pre-treatment areas; filtration and disinfection areas; and a pumping station.
The council will consider awarding a construction management contract not to exceed $962,652 to Los Angeles-based AECOM, which has an office in San Luis Obispo.
Included in the contract are tasks such as scheduling, meeting environmental regulations, maintaining a project Web page for the public and hosting various meetings.
The city has an annual 4,000-acre-foot share in the Nacimiento Water Project, a 45-mile pipeline that carries millions of gallons from the lake to residents and businesses within San Luis Obispo County.
Citizens’ protests over proposed water rates led to a five-year delay in establishing revenue to build the treatment plant. The rate hikes have been appearing on Paso Robles users’ water bills since 2012.
Meanwhile, the city has been paying for the pipeline but has largely been unable to use the untreated lake water since it became available in 2011.
The city began using some of the water for the first time this summer when it began an experimental project that filters about 2,000 gallons per minute into a new pooling system on top of the Salinas riverbed to offset Paso Robles’ summer shortages.