Forest Park Water Celebrates 25 Years of Clean, Purified Water
Serving Bucks and Montgomery Counties for two and a half decades
Chalfont, Pa.—September 13, 2019—North Penn and North Wales Water Authorities, together with Forest Park Water (FPW) Treatment Plant employees, hosted an open house celebration on September 13, to recognize 25 years of service to communities in Bucks and Montgomery Counties. The celebration marks the significant work done by Forest Park Water, fulfilling its mission of providing clean, high quality water to the region for two and a half decades.
The Authorities and Forest Park Water were joined by state and local officials to recognize the importance of a reliable and safe source of drinking water. Pennsylvania State House Representatives Steve Malagari and F. Todd Polinchock jointly presented a House citation recognizing Forest Park Water’s 25 years of service to the communities it serves. A representative from Pennsylvania Senator Steven Santarsiero’s office presented a Senate citation and Governor Tom Wolf sent a greeting congratulating Forest Park on its 25th anniversary.
From left to right: Anthony J. Bellitto, executive director of NPWA; PA House Rep. Steve Malagari; Kate Harper, partner at Timoney Knox and former PA House Representative; PA House Rep. Todd Polinchock; Bob Bender, executive director of NWWA.
Tours of the treatment plant gave attendees an inside look of how Forest Park Water purifies drinking water from Lake Galena before it’s distributed to customers of North Penn and North Wales Water Authorities.
“As both authorities look into the future, we are proud to say that Forest Park Water has such an incredible track record with providing clean, safe water to our customers,” said Tony Bellitto Jr. PE, executive director, North Penn Water Authority. “We are proud of the work that our experienced operators do at Forest Park Water. We have no doubt that Forest Park will continue to fulfill its mission for another 25 years and beyond.”
“Forest Park Water was created due a need for an alternative source of drinking water,” said Bob Bender, executive director of North Wales Water Authority. “As we look into the future, we are gratified to know that Forest Park will continue to fulfill its mission as a regional water supplier as we deal with increasingly stringent drinking water regulations and water contamination issues.”
Over 40 years ago, there was consideration of a plan to bring a much-needed supplemental water supply to Central Bucks County and Montgomery County. Ground water shortages in the 1960’s, 70’s and 80’s resulted in dangerously low water supplies. Mandatory water restrictions became a routine part of life for Bucks and Montgomery County residents during summer months.
The region relied on a 100% groundwater system. Knowing that a groundwater supply would not keep up with the expected growth, North Penn and North Wales Water Authorities had to think outside the box to develop a plan to accommodate a rapidly growing population and their water needs. Thinking into the future, a surface water supply was the best option and from that, Forest Park Water was built.
The original mission of Forest Park Water was to provide a safe and clean supplemental water supply to the many local communities experiencing repeated cycles of drought and water restrictions. In May of 1983, construction of the Delaware River Pump Station was underway, making a surface water supply possible. Opposition to the project caused delays. It would take several years involving litigation, agreements and court orders before the Authorities were able to begin utilizing the surface water supply in 1989.
The construction of an interim treatment plant meant that the Authorities could meet the growing demands. Completion of the final plant was in 1994. The final plant was equipped with state-of-the-art technology, including carbon polishing and the use of ozone. In 2007, Forest Park Water expanded to produce 40 million gallons of water per day and retrofitted with the most advanced filtration process available, called membrane filtration. In 2014, Bucks County Water and Sewer signed a contract for 10 million gallons of water per day and a 17-mile transmission main was built going into lower Bucks County. After another expansion in 2019, Forest Park Water is now able to produce 43 million gallons of water per day.
Over the last 25 years, recognition has been given to FPW for its operational excellence and outstanding water quality. FPW joined the American Water Works Association’s (AWWA) Partnership For Safe Water in 1995 and has been an AWWA Partnership For Safe Water Directors Award recipient since 2002. Since 2013, FPW has been recognized with the AWWA Partnership For Safe Water President’s Award. FPW is one of only six facilities in the U.S. to achieve the “President’s Award” of recognition every year since 2013. FPW is also an Area-Wide Optimization Award (AWOP) recipient, presented by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP), for 12 straight years.
Forest Park Water Treatment Plant is a state of the art water treatment facility that combines conventional treatment processes with advanced techniques, which include ozone disinfection and membrane filtration. Membrane filtration is a leading-edge technology capable of consistently producing very high quality water and ensures the plant can safely meet the more stringent federal and state water quality regulations that will be required in the near future. This combination of traditional and innovative water treatment allows FPW to produce the safest, highest quality water possible.