The Summit County Department of Sanitary Sewer Services (DSSS) operates and maintains the Upper Tuscarawas Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) #36, a tertiary treatment facility located in Springfield Township.
Over the years, the Upper Tusc WWTP experienced up to 50 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit violations per year, most of which were caused by an excess of ammonia and phosphorous. Because of these violations, DSSS had an urgent need to make changes to its existing system.
Before getting into the solution, it’s important to understand the journey of the Upper Tusc WWTP. Constructed in the late 1970s, the original WWTP treated the wastewater using technology common for the time and consisted of the following:
The treated effluent was then discharged to the Tuscarawas River.
Over the years, RBCs have fallen out of favor due to excessive equipment failure and increasingly stricter NPDES permit limits. Prior to improvements, the WWTP’s 32 RBCs were almost 50 years old and had reached the end of useful service life. Of these RBCs, seven had failed.
It was clear a solution was needed to improve the Upper Tusc WWTP today and prepare it for the future. That’s when ms consultants came into the picture.
DSSS had a vision for upgrading the Upper Tusc WWTP including:
ms consultants evaluated several treatment configurations during preliminary design to determine which would provide the most cost-effective means of replacing the RBCs and providing BNR for the WWTP.
Final design consisted of a Modified University of Capetown (MUCT) biological treatment process in conjunction with a variation of the Virginia Initiative Plant (VIP) process comprised of new three-phase BNR tanks, secondary clarifiers, sludge pump stations, and a chemical/operations building. Additionally, ms designed a solid waste receiving station to accept the contents of the County’s sewer maintenance vehicles.
There are a number of successes in the Upper Tusc WWTP project, from innovative cost savings to vast environmental improvements. Some highlights include: