Photo Courtesy of MWH
The existing intake (above) will be replaced by the new, state-of-the-art intake and fish screen (below) which will be built along the Sacramento River.
Photo Courtesy of MWH

A new project for the Woodland-Davis Clean Water Agency to replace deteriorating groundwater supplies with more-reliable surface water from the Sacramento River in California broke ground in April.

CH2M Hill won a $141-million contract to design, build and operate a new treatment plant; raw-water pipelines, connecting a new intake on the Sacramento River to the plant; and other, separate pipelines, delivering the treated water to the cities of Woodland and Davis. MWH Global will provide construction management and engineering services for the $44-million intake and fish-screen project on the Sacramento River.

When complete some time in 2016, the project will supply 30 million of gallons of water per day to Woodland and Davis customers. The project has potential expansion capabilities, to 34 mgd.

Currently, local residents are 100% dependent on groundwater wells, says WDCWA General Manager Dennis Diemer. Because of lower water levels, that supply is deteriorating, both in terms of quantity and quality. "Groundwater [supplies] are dropping to levels not seen since the 1976-1977 drought in California, and [they are] dropping farther in some cases," Diemer says.

The agency was granted, in 2011, the right to draw from the Sacramento River 45,000 acre-ft of water annually; further, the agency purchased rights to draw an additional 10,000 acre-ft per year from the same river, from a ranch site adjacent to the project, Diemer says The project will ensure local residents have a year-round supply of water, he adds.