water supply

Exploring Options


Several project concepts are being studied and assessed over the next two years. Tampa Bay Water is looking at various supply sources because diversity is important to having a reliable supply in a variety of weather conditions. The project concepts may change or be eliminated as the project team conducts technical analyses and meets with stakeholders, including regulatory agencies.

The current concepts, listed by water source, include:

 

Groundwater

  • Additional groundwater from existing wellfields
  • Thonotosassa Wells
 

Surface Water

  • Surface water system expansion
     
 

Seawater

  • Small footprint reverse osmosis
  • Tampa Bay Seawater Desalination Plant expansion
  • Gulf Coast Desalination
 

Reclaimed Water

  • South Hillsborough County aquifer recharge and wellfield
  • Tampa Bay Seawater Desalination Plant expansion
  • Tampa Bypass Canal supplement projects

Additional groundwater from existing wellfields

Eleven wellfields in northern Tampa Bay are currently permitted to produce 90 million gallons per day annual average. This concept is to investigate whether it is environmentally sustainable and economical to request an increase in permitted quantities.

Thonotosassa Wells

Examines the possibility of up to 10 million gallons per day of new groundwater from wells on City of Tampa property in the Thonotosassa area.

Surface Water System expansion

Builds on planning-level analyses conducted in 2009 that showed a surface water system expansion could result in average increases in yield of 7.7 to 17.3 million gallons per day.

Small footprint reverse osmosis

Monitors the progress of three city efforts to implement small-scale reverse osmosis projects: Tarpon Springs, Oldsmar and Clearwater. All of these local projects have been successfully implemented, so this effort is complete.

Tampa Bay Seawater Desalination Plant expansion

Explores the possibility of a 10-million-gallon-per-day expansion at the desalination plant. Additional source water could be either seawater from TECO’s Big Bend power plant or reclaimed water from Hillsborough County or the City of Tampa. The majority of the facility was originally built to accommodate future expansion, but some infrastructure changes would be required.

Gulf Coast Desalination

A second seawater desalination plant was previously considered for co-location with the Anclote Power Plant in southwest Pasco County. The Anclote Power Plant is now owned by Duke Energy, so this concept must be explored with the new owner. Other possible configurations and sizes will also be explored. This concept could yield 9-25 million gallons per day of drinking water on an annual average.

South Hillsborough County aquifer recharge and wellfield

Involves recharging the Floridan Aquifer with purified reclaimed water injected by well to increase aquifer levels. Groundwater would be withdrawn at a nearby wellfield for potable supply. The goal would be to achieve a net benefit to the Floridan Aquifer, while producing approximately 20 million gallons per day of drinking water. Hillsborough County is pilot testing a similar concept, the South Hillsborough Aquifer Recharge Project (SHARP)*. SHARP will include recharge wells installed along the coast to increase aquifer levels and reduce saltwater intrusion into the freshwater aquifer and will explore the possibility of withdrawing groundwater for potable supply at a distant wellfield. Tampa Bay Water will incorporate technical information provided by Hillsborough County for SHARP into this long-term planning process to support a consistent evaluation of all project concepts.

Tampa Bypass Canal supplement projects

Explores adding purified reclaimed water directly to the Tampa Bypass Canal to increase flows and allow for additional surface water withdrawals. Another option being investigated by the City of Tampa is called the Tampa Augmentation Project*. The City’s current concept is to increase flows using rapid infiltration basins located adjacent to the Tampa Bypass Canal. Tampa Bay Water will incorporate technical information provided by the City of Tampa for the Tampa Augmentation Project into this long-term planning process to support a consistent evaluation of all project concepts.