Tahoe City PUD plans West Shore water treatment plant | SierraSun.com

Tahoe City PUD plans West Shore water treatment plant

Margaret Moran

TAHOE CITY, Calif. — To address water supply and quality concerns for portions of the West Shore, the Tahoe City Public Utility District plans to build a treatment plant as early as next year.

Located between Homewood and Tahoma, the McKinney Quail Water Service Area that serves 559 connections has historically experienced supply and quality deficiencies.

The TCPUD is considering three potential building sites for a treatment plant — Lodge Road, Chamberland Drive and Lagoon Road.

The Lodge and Chamberland sites are located on a California Tahoe Conservancy-owned parcel, while the Lagoon site is on a TCPUD-owned parcel.

Use of either the Lodge or Chamberland site would require CTC board approval of property rights — whether in the form of an easement, license or purchase, said Matt Homolka, district engineer/assistant general manager.

Selection of a preferred site will be made by the PUD board of directors based on public input and the findings of an environmental document, expected to be released later this month and posted on the project's website, waterplant.tcpud.org.

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Preliminary designs for the West Lake Tahoe Regional Water Treatment Plant estimates it at 3,500 square feet and 21 feet tall. It's proposed to supply a maximum of 650 gallons per minute with the ability to expand to 1,000 gpm.

It will serve the McKinney Quail Water System, Tahoma Meadows, and Homewood Mountain Resort and its base development plans.

It could also serve as a backup or supplemental source to other West Shore water systems, including Madden Creek Water Company, Tahoe Cedars Water Company and Timberland Water Company.

The earliest the plant could break ground is fall 2016, with an anticipated year-and-a-half construction timeframe for a late summer 2017 completion, Homolka said.

Total project cost is estimated at $9.38 million for the Lodge and Chamberland sites, with the Lagoon site estimated to cost an additional $1.2 million, said Kurt Althof, grants and community information administrator for the PUD.

Potential funding sources include grants, low or no-interest loans, water rate and property tax revenues, and capital reserves, he said.

Additional revenue from customers will not be needed, according to the PUD. The district's water rates were developed to cover a five-year capital plan, including this project.

Once operational, the PUD's interim surface water treatment plant at Chambers Landing that was built in 2004 to help stabilize water supply will be decommissioned.