New Location Proposed for SF Recycled Water Project

Tentative agreement advances program to diversify City’s local water supply

San Francisco, CA.  – The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission and the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department announced today that the location for a proposed recycled water treatment facility has been moved from its previous location in Golden Gate Park to a space at the Oceanside Wastewater Treatment Plant and a portion of the nearby California Army National Guard Armory.  The move would re-start the public engagement and environmental review process for San Francisco’s first treatment plant to recycle water for irrigation and other non-drinking purposes. 

“Diversifying our local water sources with recycled water is a critical part of our long term water supply plan,” said SFPUC General Manager Ed Harrington.  “The challenge for this project was choosing a treatment location that was acceptable not only from a feasibility standpoint, but also from the viewpoint of local stakeholders.  This solution accomplishes both of these goals.”

“We are thankful the SFPUC was able to identify a new potential site for this critical water supply project. It is important to know the concerns of our park advocates were heard and addressed,” said Phil Ginsburg, Recreation and Park Department General Manager. “We look forward to the time we can start using recycled water in one of our City’s greatest parks.”

The SFPUC originally proposed a site at the western edge of Golden Gate Park because of its proximity to existing infrastructure and the Park itself, which would be a major customer of recycled water for irrigation purposes. Through a series of public meetings, the community expressed concerns over this proposed location.  Staff began the search for viable alternatives, and eventually identified a potential site that would be located at the Oceanside Wastewater Treatment Plant and a portion of the nearby Armory.  This option did not become viable until recently when a tentative agreement was reached with the California Army National Guard.

San Francisco resident and Bay Area Water Stewards member Ann Clark said “I want to join others in thanking you for the work you are doing on this. It is because we all got together to talk this thing through. Thank you for doing this for all of us.”

Next Steps

The SFPUC will hold a public meeting to introduce the details of the proposed relocation within the next couple of months.  Negotiations between the SFPUC and the California Army National Guard will continue.  The Environmental Review process, which had been put on hold, will restart later this year. 

About the Project

The Westside Recycled Water Project is part of the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission’s Local Water Supply Program, which is working to produce a reliable and sustainable local water supply through a combination of additional groundwater usage, more conservation, and increased water reuse. The project would include a new recycled water treatment plant that would provide 2 million gallons per day of advanced level treated water for non-potable purposes (e.g. non-drinking uses such as irrigation and toilet flushing) to a variety of customers on the west side of San Francisco.  These customers include Golden Gate Park, Lincoln Park and the Lincoln Park Golf Course, the Presidio Golf Course and the California Academy of Sciences.

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