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Metropolitan Waste Water Reclamation Project | Special Collections & University Archives

Name: Metropolitan Waste Water Reclamation Project

Historical Note:

In 1958 the city of San Diego conducted a study to determine a better way to dispose of sewage.  Prior to this study, the city's sewage was disposed of in the San Diego bay, after receiving varying degrees of treatment. The city contracted with the firm of Holmes & Navar-Montgomery to find an alternative to dumping waste in the bay to eliminate potential health and environmental risks.

Holmes & Navar-Montgomery proposed five alternative plans, but after the city completed the initial cost appraisal, it determined that disposing of city waste into the ocean was still the most cost-efficient method of waste management. Another plan provided for a system of interceptor sewers and pumping stations that would end at a new treatment plant in Fort Rosecrans. From this new plant, waste would travel through a multiple port diffuser located about 220 miles under water, and would then be dumped into the ocean approximately 13,000 miles off shore.  The estimated cost of this plan was $41,136,000.

Note Author: Jennifer Hollander

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