Making improvements to Collins Park Water Treatment Plant

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - Toledo is about half way through their Water Capital Improvement Program that they started in 2012.

They are set to enter the heart of the plant's construction this year.

According to water treatment manager Warren Henry, Toledo is currently taking bids to start working on adding a Basin 7 and Basin 8 to their facility.

The additions of the basins will use more than $70 million out of the $500 million fund.

It's been five years since the program began and it isn't expected to near completion until 2022.

"That will allow us to meet future demands going all the way through year 2040, 2050. So when it's all said and done, our existing plant which now has a capacity of 120 million gallons per day will actually have a future capacity of 160," Warren said.

The overall objective is provide better water quality in a more efficient way, so they are focusing on replacing  equipment that dates back to the 1940s.

This will also help them provide water treatment at a lower rate.  Each of the basins will add 20 million gallons per day of treatment capacity.

According to Henry, Toledo is paying for the improvement program with a series of bond issues. They have around 5 bonds that they issue every two to three years.

The borrowing that is taking place to help pay for this should be paid off by Toledo in the next 30 years.

The city is working with the Environmental Protection Agency and meets with them monthly to ensure safety of the water during all of the changes.

Some of those changes include helping with harmful algal bloom events and algal toxins from lake Erie.

"It's going to take years to clean up Lake Erie, so the barriers we're adding are ozone treatment is the first step. We're also adding a technology that came from Europe and that's to use biologically active filters. When it's all said and done, we're going to have a state of the art facility," Henry said.

The plant provides water to about 500,000 people, not only to the city of Toledo but surrounding areas as well.

The City is encouraging residents to get involved in the process.

Residents can visit here to track the progress of the program as it's completed.

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