Many established municipalities have infrastructure in need of repair or replacement, and the City of Columbus is no different. Columbus has components in its water system that need to be replaced because of age or upsized due to increasing demands throughout the system. Additionally, developments are sprouting up outside the City limits, but still within the Columbus service area. This continued growth creates the need to extend the already 3,600 mile network of water mains, booster stations, storage tanks and pressure reducing valves further outside the City, while continuing to upgrade the aging infrastructure within the system. The City contracted with the Chester Engineers team to complete a comprehensive evaluation of the City's Water Distribution System with regards to future demands, facilities upgrades and optimizing the system for energy and operations and management savings.
The Interdisciplinary Approach
The project began with an all-inclusive evaluation to identify which areas of the City are likely to see the greatest future demands, which areas will have little change and which areas might even decrease. This information was utilized during the hydraulic modeling phase to locate the areas of the City most affected by the anticipated demand increases or decreases over the 10-yr., 15-yr., and 20-yr. planning periods and to provide the necessary infrastructure improvements to service these areas. Chester's expert modelers confirmed the calibration of the model using SCADA data from the three water treatment plants, 30 Pressure Reducing Valves, over 30 elevated tanks and 19 booster stations. Once the model was calibrated to the criteria set by the design team and the City, the future modeling task began. The team evaluated alternative routing, sizes and connections of the water mains, evaluated upgrades to booster stations and storage facilities.
The Sustainable Result
Chester was able to help provide the City with a Capital Improvement Project list for the next five years. The improvements include upgrades to existing treatment plants, booster stations, and water mains. Also included were extensions of existing water mains to serve the expected future population.