A Wisconsin utility uses a pump station upgrade as an opportunity to accomplish additional community and conservation goals


When the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District in Wisconsin needed to upgrade a four-decade-old pump station, it decided the site could provide value beyond the prime objective of conveying wastewater to the treatment plant. Now the site, located between a city park boat ramp and a heavily used bike path, also features new public restrooms, an aquatic invasive species boat wash station and a bike repair area.

The new additions to the district’s Pumping Station 15 made their debut on July 1. The $4.3 million project reflects the district’s ongoing efforts to meet infrastructure needs of the communities it serves while putting conservation practices in action, says Michael Mucha, chief engineer and director of Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District. Preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species and encouraging clean modes of transportation are among many steps that will help maintain or improve surface water quality in the region and avoid costly upgrades to the district’s conveyance and treatment facilities.

“Our lakes, rivers and streams are fundamental to our quality of life and the region’s thriving economy,” Mucha says. “Sensible land use practices, wise use of salt for streets and softeners, reducing runoff and preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species all make a real difference. By making even small changes today, we are supporting public health, recreational opportunities and affordable municipal services now and for future generations.”

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Pumping Station 15 provides service to Middleton, a suburb of Madison, including growing areas such as Bishops Bay and much of the Town of Westport. Built in 1974, the station collects and pumps about 1.3 mgd up to University Avenue where it continues on to the district’s treatment plant.

The need to replace the 40-plus-year-old pumps and prepare for future capacity led the district to engage with local leaders, community members and other stakeholders to get feedback on how the project could also address other needs at the site. With the site’s proximity to the City of Madison’s Marshall Park boat ramp and a popular City of Middleton bike path, the decision was made to add public restrooms, two aquatic invasive species boat wash hydrants and a bike repair station.

Special design features include permeable pavers, carefully sloped asphalt in the parking lot to direct stormwater runoff away from the lake and a bio-retention pond to catch water used at the boat washing station.

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While the public portion of Pumping Station 15 is now open, the actual pumping station infrastructure will not be completed until the end of the year. The project includes a new above-ground equipment building, work on the underground pump room and wet well, replacement of the HVAC, electrical and monitoring systems, and installation of the new pumps. Construction started in June 2016.

Learn more about the project by visiting the district’s website at www.madsewer.org and searching “Pumping Station 15.”

ABOUT MMSD
Established in 1930 to protect the lakes and streams of the upper Yahara watershed, Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District today serves 28 Madison area customer communities covering some 360,000 people. The district owns and operates 95 miles of gravity sewer and 18 regional pumping stations that convey approximately 41 million gallons of wastewater to the Nine Springs Wastewater Treatment Plant each day. Organized as a municipal corporation, the district is a leader in sustainability and resource reclamation; its rates are established by the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District Commission.

Related: EPA Grant Program Provides Boost to Cities’ Stormwater Management

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