Illinois American Water upgrades East St. Louis Water Treatment Plant

Illinois American Water’s Interurban (Metro East) District, which serves the communities of East St. Louis, Granite City, Belleville and surrounding areas, announced it has completed the upgrade of its East St. Louis Water Treatment Plant.

With $12 million investment, the project was kicked off in 2015, and focused on enhancing the reliability and operational efficiencies, while incorporating environmental technology, officials at Illinois American Water said.

The project included a significant electrical upgrade and water treatment system improvement. A new 2.5 megawatt generator and power distribution switchgear were installed in news buildings able to withstand 150 mph winds.

Upgrades were also made to critical electrical and SCADA monitoring systems, to ensure continued high-quality and reliable water service. Overhead electrical lines distributing power to remote parts of the plant were also replaced with underground lines to ensure safety and reliability.

The water treatment system was also upgraded. The Mississippi River, the source water for the Metro East area, can have high levels of sand and grit. To combat this, a grit removal system was installed. According to Cooper, the technology will reduce chemical usage and maintenance, resulting from sand and grit in the treatment process.

Sachs Electric in Granite City was the contractor for the project.

According to the American Water Works Association, the leading trade association serving the country’s water industry, at least $1 trillion is needed over the next 25 years to maintain and replace the nation’s outdated water and wastewater systems.

Illinois American Water has been addressing this challenge by investing $70 -$100 million annually in water and wastewater improvements across the state, the company said.

Rajani Baburajan

[email protected]