Wastewater is water that has been used in washing, watering, bathing, flushing, and manufacturing. Treatment of this water plays a critical role in keeping our waterways suitable for sustaining aquatic life and supporting renowned outdoor recreation opportunities for which we have gained national recognition (Six of the Best River Parks in the U.S., 2015, REI Co-op).
Richmond's wastewater treatment plant is located along the south bank of the James River and opened in 1958. The facility makes a huge impact on the everyday quality of life of the 200,000 (and growing) customers it serves, which is why we have invested heavily in upkeep and maintenance. In 2017, the facility completed a $120 million upgrade. Another upgrade in 2020 increased the plant's treatment capacity to 140 million gallons of combined wastewater and stormwater per day before returning the treated water safely back to the James. This latest upgrade represents an increase of 65 million gallons treated per day.