Cheat Lake Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade
This webpage serves as a resource in support of the Cheat Lake Wastewater Treatment Plant Upgrade. Information on this page will be updated as the project moves forward.
The Morgantown Utility Board is planning a major upgrade to its Cheat Lake Wastewater Treatment Plant (WWTP) and to the Whites Run Pump Station. MUB took ownership and operational responsibility for the Cheat Lake WWTP in the late 1990s. In 2001, the Cheat Lake WWTP underwent a major expansion and the Whites Run Pump Station was constructed. The plant currently serves nearly 3,000 customers in the Cheat Lake area. The Cheat Lake WWTP sanitary sewer collection system, owned and maintained by MUB, is independent of the MUB-owned-and-operated Star City WWTP system.
The purpose of the project is to increase capacity of the Cheat Lake WWTP and the Whites Run Pump Station to serve customers over the next 20 years. This project will facilitate future growth and development while meeting the requirements of federal and state regulations related to water quality in the receiving water body of Cheat Lake. Currently, the plant's capacity is occasionally surpassed during large rain events when flows exceed the plant’s design. What's more, the Cheat Lake WWTP and Whites Run Pump Station equipment and facilities are approaching the end of their service life. To maintain compliance with our NPDES permit limits while serving future development, upgrades are required.
This project will provide significant upgrades to the Cheat Lake Wastewater Treatment Plant and Whites Run Pump Station. This includes expansion to the south of the existing plant onto land purchased by MUB for this purpose in 2018.
In addition to increasing capacity, improvements and renovations to the plant and pump station during the upgrade include pumping systems, preliminary treatment, biological activated sludge, disinfection, effluent outfall, biosolids management, odor control, stormwater collection and treatment, supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA), electrical distribution system, emergency standby power, lighting, security systems, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC), and site utility work.
This project involves installation of UV disinfectant that will provide state-of-the-art treatment processes, odor control to improve air quality adjacent the facility, standby power to support plant operations in the event of a power outage, and treatment system resiliency to meet permit limits and protect the receiving body of Cheat Lake.
Specifically, the project will increase the treatment capacity of the plant from the current 0.75 million gallons per day (mgd) to 1.75 mgd and the Whites Run Pump Station capacity from 1.98 mgd to 4.1 mgd. This is designed to meet the estimated growth needs of the area for the next 20 years while making the plant more readily expandable to meet further future growth.
Strand Associates completed the preliminary engineering report for the project in November of 2022 and has been selected for final design. It is expected that final design and permitting will take approximately 20 months to complete, beginning during the spring/summer of 2023 and concluding in early 2025.
Estimated Rate Adjustments
Total construction cost of the project is currently estimated at $28,718,000. MUB has applied for federal support in the amount of $14,359,000, representing 50% of the project cost. Bonds will be secured for the remainder of the funding, or all of the funding should federal monies not be awarded. The specific impact on rates has not yet been determined.
On Tuesday, March 14, 2023, MUB's Board of Directors held their monthly meeting at The Cranberry Hotel in Cheat Lake. During this meeting, design phase information was presented by Strand Associates to the board of directors and the public for the first time. Public input was taken and received at the meeting. A copy of the presentation given by Strand Associates at the board of directors meeting is available here via Dropbox. A video of the meeting can be found here via YouTube.
The proposed improvements will be discussed at MUB public meetings. Each monthly MUB meeting is conducted in strict accordance with West Virginia State Code, including advance public notice of the time and place. The meeting agendas are published in the local newspaper and on the MUB Web site. You can also follow MUB on Facebook and on Twitter for agenda postings. Public comment is solicited at every monthly meeting. You can also send comments to MUB via mail or online or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional public notice and comment opportunities will be available as MUB pursues rate and bond ordinances.
Design Timeline Preliminary Engineering Report (PER)
Completed November 2022
Final Design Anticipated Start
Final Design Anticipated Completion
Projected Start Date
Projected Completion Date
Preliminary Construction Cost Estimate
50% to 100% depending on federal appropriations