In 2013, the City of Brooklyn obtained a new National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit from the Iowa DNR. It came with more stringent discharge limits to meet new water-quality standards of the Clean Water Act. The city’s existing wastewater treatment facility – a three-cell, aerated, lagoon treatment system – could not meet the new standards. An upgrade of the city’s wastewater treatment system was in order.
MMS Consultants, Inc. has a long history of successful partnership with the City of Brooklyn, including sewer and other wastewater projects. Brooklyn tapped MMS for this project as well, and we began the process in 2014 with an analysis and report on the city’s options. MMS recommended the city convert to an activated sludge treatment system, and the city agreed.
Funding posed a challenge for the city. Brooklyn is a small community with a tight municipal budget. The total estimated project cost was $4.1 million. MMS Consultants assisted the city with obtaining a Community Development Block Grant for $500,000 and a State Revolving Fund loan for the remainder.
Ultraviolet disinfection is a big piece of the system, which MMS affectionately refers to as the “double doughnut” because of its shape. UV light is used to kill pathogens in the wastewater, eliminating the need for chlorination and its chemical side effects.
The project includes new buildings and pipes at the treatment plant site, a new relief sewer south of town to move wastewater to the plant and a new outfall pipe to move clean, treated water to Little Bear Creek.
The outfall pipe passes under a rail line, requiring MMS and the City of Brooklyn to collaborate with Iowa Interstate Railroad. MMS also partnered with Design Engineers, for electrical and HVAC work, and Shoemaker & Haaland, for structural engineering, on this project.
MMS’ services include systems analysis, engineering design, funding assistance, bidding assistance, and construction administration and inspection.