DENVER -- Drivers in Southeast Denver may have noticed a 20-foot mountain of dirt piled high near Happy Canyon Road and E. Hampden Ave.
The massive construction site in Southeast Denver is just the beginning of a $100 million Denver Water project to update the treated water storage system.
After three months of digging, the excavation is the length of three football fields and about 30 feet deep, a site that will eventually hold three new treated water storage tanks.
"This project is a good example of Denver Water investing in the future of our system because we want to make sure we have a reliable, high quality system," said Martin Garcia, Denver Water's Design Project Manager. "So when you turn on your tap for a drink of water, you don't have to worry about it."
With Denver's growth and the aging storage system in place, Garcia said it was time to replace the existing tanks built in 1960.
"They're ready to be replaced," said Garcia. "It's like when you have an old car, and you're putting money into repairs. It comes to a point when you think, 'Well, I really should just get a new car.'"
Contractors are replacing the two, 15-million gallon rectangular storage tanks currently onsite with three 15-million gallon circular post-tensioned concrete tanks – which is a design less susceptible to leaks, Garcia said.
Here is the construction schedule according to Denver Water:
Phase I: Crews will replace the two 15 million gallon rectangular storage tanks with three same sized, circular post-tensioned concrete tanks – a durable design less susceptible to leaks. The new tanks will sit slightly south of the existing tanks and will be buried up to roof height, which will be visible. We anticipate the first phase of construction will run from early 2016 through late 2019.
Phase II: Crews will focus on pumping station upgrades, including expanding the building and replacing outdated pumping equipment. Once completed, the final site will also benefit from significant landscape and irrigation improvements. This second phase of construction will overlap with the first and is anticipated for 2018 through early 2020.