MIDWEST CITY, Okla. — The City of Midwest City is taking a big step to avoid being fined by the Department of Environmental Quality.
One of the city’s biggest facilities is crumbling but now work on a new plant has begun.
It’s created quite the spectacle on the north side of town.
Whether it’s the water from your sink or you toilet, it all has to go somewhere.
In Midwest City, it goes to the Wastewater Treatment Facility.
This plant is getting a major makeover thanks to voters and a new sales tax.
William Janacek, the Director of Midwest City Environmental Services, said, “I love it. I’ve been in favor of it since I first heard about it.”
The centerpiece right now is a huge crater nearly as long as a football field and about two stories deep.
It’s just one of a few holes that will eventually hold all of Midwest City’s wastewater.
Janacek said, “If you imagine an Olympic-size swimming pool filled to the brim.”
The new wastewater plant will be a high-tech facility that will use ultra violet light instead of chemicals to purify the water.
The current facility used to breakdown waste is itself breaking down, putting the city at risk of hefty fines.
Janacek said, “It’s just outlived its useful life.”
The plant was built nearly 50 years ago; the average life for a facility like this is only about 20 years.
Janacek said, “It’s been obsolete for so long you can’t find parts.”
The new plant will be the first of its kind in Oklahoma.
The new facility won’t be completely finished until the spring of 2014.
The city is helping with the changes to acquire a permit to allow them to take solid waste, mix it with wood chips and leaves from the sanitation department and create compost the city could potentially use at local parks or city lawns.
That compost could someday be available to the residents of Midwest City.