Delivery of Treated Surface Water
The Authority is also responsible for building the water pipelines to deliver treated water to the utility districts to serve hundreds of thousands of residents. And that’s no small task.
Luce Bayou Interbasin Transfer Project
A new alliance of regional water providers have teamed up to initiate the Luce Bayou Interbasin Transfer Project with the capacity to bring raw water from the Trinity River to Lake Houston and the city’s northeast Water Purification Plant. The partners include the City of Houston, North Harris County Regional Water Authority, West Harris County Regional Water Authority, Central Harris County Regional Water Authority, North Fort Bend Water Authority, and the Coastal Water Authority.
Northeast Water Purification Plant Expansion
In anticipation of additional water from the Luce Bayou Interbasin Transfer Project, the regional water authorities and the City of Houston, forged a partnership to accomplish an expansion of the Northeast Water Purification Plant (NEWPP), with each paying it’s fair share of the costs. This multi-billion dollar project, to be completed in phases over the next six to nine years, will increase the treatment capacity from the current 80 million gallons a day, to 400 million gallons a day. The expansion project is considered to be the largest design-build project of it’s kind underway in the US today.
Water Distribution and Transmission System
In addition to the partnered construction projects mentioned above, the Authority will also incur costs to build more infrastructure to receive and deliver water treated at the Northeast Water Purification Plant to the MUDs/water providers within the Authority’s boundaries. This includes two major pump stations and constructing an additional 94 miles of transmission and distribution lines to connect another 45 Municipal Utility Districts.
The Authority is partnering with the City of Houston to construct an additional 16.5 miles of pipe to deliver 113 MGD of treated water from the NEWPP to the new SH 249 Regional Pump Station and storage facility. This includes 2200 ft. of a 120 inch line — that’s 10 ft. in diameter. Another segment, shared with the Central Harris County Regional Water Authority, will be 9 ft. in diameter and almost 8 miles long. These huge pipelines are big enough to drive a truck through.
In addition to the cost of purchasing the surface water from the City of Houston, there are shared transmission, operations, and maintenance expenses to be paid. All of these factors, coupled with the cost of constructing the NHCRWA’s, 2025 water supply system, will impact the future cost of water.