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New wastewater treatment plant successfully completes test run

WILLMAR -- Willmar's new wastewater treatment plant completed a seven-day test run this week without any operating issues.

Plant contractor Graham Construction Services began the test run known as a systems demonstration on Aug. 16. Graham was required under contract with the city to demonstrate satisfactory operation of the plant's systems and associated facilities before the plant could be considered substantially complete and the city take ownership.

Holly Wilson, acting public works director, said the test run, in which water was run through the plant, ended Monday without a glitch.

"It went seven days consecutively without any issues. That was a good thing,'' she said.

With the demonstration successfully completed, project engineers Donohue and Associates recommended that the plant was substantially completed and city officials approved the city taking ownership of the new plant. Wilson said the city is now in charge of the plant.

Wilson said seeding of millions of microbes that will digest and break down the waste started Wednesday.

The seeding process will take about six weeks. During that time, industrial waste will gradually be directed to the plant, followed by gradual introduction of municipal waste. By the end of six weeks, all industrial and municipal waste will be flowing to the new plant, said Wilson.

David Little
David Little covers the Willmar City Council, Willmar Municipal Utilities and other city news.
(320) 235-1150