Welcome to CDM Smith.

Providing a Sustainable Water Supply for a Virginia Community’s Future

Loudoun Water leesburg, virginia, usa
To address future water supply needs, protect local communities and promote sustainability, Loudoun Water partnered with CDM Smith to design and oversee construction of a state-of-the-art drinking water treatment facility.

Established in 1959, Loudoun Water provides public water and sewer service for residents of Loudoun County, Virginia. The utility has been providing clean and safe drinking water for decades through wholesale purchase from a neighboring utility which sources their supply from the Potomac River. Forecasts of significant growth in Loudoun County prompted Loudoun Water to embark on a planning initiative called the Potomac Water Supply Program (PWSP), established to ensure a safe, sustainable water supply for the future. The PWSP includes a new raw water intake on the Potomac River; raw water trans­mis­sion mains; off-line raw water storage using a series of abandoned quarries; a new water treatment plant and finished water trans­mis­sion. CDM Smith was retained to perform preliminary engineering, final design, bid phase services, and construc­tion management for the 20-mgd state-of-the-art Trap Rock Water Treatment Facility (TRWTF) and finished water trans­mis­sion system.

“The Potomac River has supported Loudoun County’s growth for decades, but the river requires the additional off-line quarry storage to sustain population growth while maintaining minimum flows in the river,” said CDM Smith discipline leader for water treatment and drinking water expert Bill Dowbiggin, PE, BCEE. “The new facility will provide a reliable and solid foundation for future growth.”

up to mgd
finished water produced
linear feet of water trans­mis­sion main
kilowatt hours of clean renewable energy

 A Best-In-Class Drinking Water Plant

During the plant’s preliminary design phase, the project team began by analyzing the Potomac River’s water quality to best determine treatment goals for the Trap Rock plant. Targeted bench- and full-scale tests helped to support the development of design criteria for preox­i­da­tion and ozone disin­fec­tion treatment processes. Components of the facility include:

  • An ozone generation, delivery and contacting system that includes on-site liquid oxygen vapor­iza­tion and ozone generation, raw water pre-oxidation using sidestream injection and pipeline flash reactors, and inter­me­di­ate (settled water) ozonation utilizing sidestream injection and mixing nozzles in contact basins
  • A two-stage rapid mixing system consisting of a pumped injection flash mixing system and a mechanical vertical shaft mixing system, allowing for sequential addition of treatment chemicals in either or both mixing stages
  • Parallel three-stage tapered floc­cu­la­tion trains with vertical turbine-type floc­cu­la­tors and variable-speed drives to control mixing energy

  • Conven­tional sedi­men­ta­tion basins with chain and flight solids collection equipment

  • GAC/sand dual media biological filters with nozzle and plenum type underdrain system
  • Ultraviolet (UV) reactors for disin­fec­tion and/or as an additional treatment barrier 
  • A finished water pumping station sized to meet the plant expansion capacity of 40 mgd, with three vertical turbine can pumps rated at 10 mgd each for finished water, three backwash pumps and a layout that includes pump slots for installing additional pumps in the future. A 2-mgd sanitary sewer pumping station and the associated 12-inch ductile iron and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) sanitary sewer force main piping from the site to an existing outfall was also constructed
  • Approx­i­mately 5,000 linear feet of 42-inch finished water trans­mis­sion main, including a tunnel portion and approx­i­mately 1,500 linear feet of 24-inch and 16-inch mains for future tie-in
  • A residuals treatment and recycle system that includes flow equal­iza­tion, plate settlers, gravity thickening, recycle pumping (designed for full recycle) and emergency overflow storage
It’s been great to work with a utility that is so forward-thinking; it’s allowed us to find the best solutions for Loudoun County residents.
bill dowbiggin, project manager

Promoting Sustain­abil­ity from the Ground Up
From its inception, the Trap Rock Water Treatment Facility was designed to meet drinking water regulations via sustainable expansion and low-impact development principles. LEED certi­fi­ca­tion of the Admin­is­tra­tive Building is being pursued by use of recycled and locally sourced building materials, drought tolerant landscaping, water-efficient plumbing fixtures, energy-efficient lighting with automatic controls, natural ventilation, and a high-efficiency HVAC system that operates based on an energy recovery method. It is expected that the Admin­is­tra­tion Building will generate roughly 40,000 killowatt-hours (kWh) of clean renewable energy annually as a result of a new solar photo­voltaic system. The process areas were strate­gi­cally located to minimize earth moving and head loss across the plant. The design also includes a 300-foot no-build buffer, preser­va­tion of existing trees, and careful integration of stormwater and erosion and sediment controls. 

The facility was designed to allow for cost-effective expansion from 20-mgd to 40-mgd with minimal additional capital investments and potential inter­me­di­ate uprating steps. Treatment process features and space for future treatment alter­na­tives were carefully planned to address regulatory changes and/or emerging cont­a­m­i­nants. 

“The program that’s in place right now is set to evolve over the next 50 years,” said Bill Dowbiggin. “It’s been great to work with a utility that is so forward-thinking; it’s allowed us to implement innovative strategies during every step of the project and find the best solutions for Loudoun County residents.” 

William Dowbiggin William Dowbiggin
The new facility will provide a reliable and solid foundation for future growth.
Project Details
Laboratory Design and Construction
Additional facility upgrades include an 800-square-foot Operators' Lab which features custom casework, center island with lab sinks and built-in neutralization, process sample sink for 11 faucets, fume hood, emergency eyewash units and other amenities. Architectural finishes were carefully selected to blend with the rest of the plant while serving the necessary functionality of the lab environment.

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