The First Sewers
The first sewers were built at the end of the nineteenth century. These sewers were constructed to move domestic waste away from populated areas. The sewers were designed to handle both sanitary wastewater and stormwater. The effluent from the combined sewers was discharged directly into the Maumee and Auglaize Rivers. This practice of sewage disposal continued until the 1950’s.
Treating the Influent in the 1950’s
In the 1950’s, significant growth in the City’s population caused an increase in pollution in surrounding rivers and streams. The health hazards resulting from the pollution prompted the City to build an interceptor sewer and a primary treatment plant. The project was completed in 1956 at a cost of more than $2 million.
Updating the System in the 1960’s
In 1962, the City developed a plan to construct new sanitary sewers in non-sewered areas to update and relieve overloading in the existing system. The wastewater treatment plant was expanded from primary to secondary treatment to meet the growing demand for clean water. This project was completed in 1969.
Improvements During the 1980’s
By the 1980’s, there was a need for renovations and improvements at the wastewater treatment plant to restore process equipment that had been in use for 20 to 30 years. The upgrades also allowed the treatment plant to meet more stringent discharge requirements. The improvements were completed in 1989 at a cost of $11,711,000.
The Project – Year 2000 Improvements
In 1998, the treatment plant capacity was increased from 4.0 million gallons per day (MGD) to 6.0 MGD. This upgrade also allowed for Ammonia nitrogen to be biologically removed in the aeration tanks. The expansion allowed the City to provide service to neighboring areas of Defiance County, including the Village of Ayersville. These improvements were completed in 2000 at a cost of $7.5 million.