New Jersey American Water yesterday celebrated the completion of a significant, long-term flood protection project at its Raritan-Millstone Water Treatment Plant with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the grounds of the plant.
This $37 million project will help ensure the water supply at the plant is protected from the increased risk of flooding during extreme weather events while maintaining a sustainable water supply for more than 1 million people in the central New Jersey region.
“We have fortified this critical infrastructure in order to provide clean, safe, reliable water service – not only to our customers in Central New Jersey who rely on us every day, but also the millions of residents throughout the state we help during emergency situations,” said Deborah Degillio, president of New Jersey American Water.
The plant is located near the confluence of the Raritan and Millstone Rivers – an area of Somerset County that experiences severe flooding during significant storm events due to the relative low ground surface elevations in the floodways adjacent to the two rivers.
Prior to the $37 million investment project, the earthen berms and north side reinforced concrete flood wall surrounding the plant were previously designed to provide flood protection for a 100-year flood event, which is marked by an elevation of 44 feet.
With the completion of this project, the entire floodwall system at the plant has now been raised by four feet to an elevation of 48 feet, which is the level of flood resiliency supported by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps.
In addition to raising the plant’s north reinforced concrete floodwall, the earthen berms in the northeast and west have also been raised and widened, additional reinforced concrete flood walls have been constructed, new flood gates have been installed and drainage mechanisms have been improved.