Box Elder and Ellsworth Air Force Base (EAFB) built a joint wastewater treatment facility in July 2014. The $16 million project is expected to be a cost saver for both the city and the base, which needs to upgrade its existing facilities. EAFB and the City of Box Elder evenly split the cost of the facility, but the facility is owned by the state and overseen by the South Dakota Ellsworth Development Authority (SDEDA). Developed in 2009, SDEDA helps protect the base from closure. The new facility handles three million gallons of wastewater a day and officially became operational in July 2014. The construction portion of the project included construction of influent parshall flume; process building with fine screening, pumping, sludge dewatering, blowers and electrical equipment; grit removal structure; sequencing batch reactor (SBR) structure; administration building with laboratory, offices, break room, and garage; UV disinfection structure and pressate lift station. It also included installation of preselected SBR equipment, site work, yard piping, and electrical and mechanical system work associated with the improvements.
PSI is providing Resident Project Representative (RPR) and operations and maintenance services for the SDEDA Wastewater Treatment Plant. The new facility is an activated sludge plant with sequence batch reactors; PSI staffs five operators for the operation and maintenance portion of the contract. The RPR assisted SDEDA’s consultant in observing progress and work quality.