Renovations to the Waste Water Treatment Plant in Whiteville make it seem brand new

Reported by Laura Sinacori - bio|email
Posted by Debra Worley - email

COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WECT) - A major renovation at Whiteville's Waste Water Treatment Plant is already showing benefits outside of city limits.

The project took more than a year and a half to complete at a cost of $11 million.

The state paid $6 million and the rest of the funding came from taxpayers and the City of Whiteville.  So far it looks like the multi-million dollar project has paid off.

You use water everyday, but many people don't know where it goes afterwards.

For workers at the Waste Water Treatment Plant in Whiteville, cleaning the water is essential.

"We have to remove all the organics and stuff out of it before it can actually go into receiving waters," said the water treatment supervisor Asure Spivey.

The receiving waters include the White Marsh, the Waccamaw River, and the Ocean at Georgetown in South Carolina.

"The old plant didn't have the capacity of removing phosphorus and nitrogen and all that stuff, with this process here we which helps clean the water better," said Spivey.

The 35-year-old plant is now practically brand new and much better.  The renovations allowed the plant to treat more than a million more gallons of water a day.

The additional waste will come from towns like Lake Waccamaw and Brunswick County which helps smaller communities and means extra revenue for the City of Whiteville.

"People are very fortunate in Whiteville," said Whiteville City Manager Joshua Ray. "They spend a minimal amount each month one of the lowest bills in the state for water and sewer combined rates and luckily we have people at the plant who clean that."

City leaders hope the improved facility will eventually create new jobs, but that depends on how much water they treat per day.