It's not as glamorous as a shiny new event center, an indoor pool or a brand new government office building.
But work to replace an essential piece of Sioux Falls infrastructure got started Tuesday morning when the city broke ground on a $24.4 million sewer project.
Nearly all of the waste water produced at Sioux Falls homes and businesses goes through the pump station near Rice Street and Bahnson Avenue on its way to the sanitary sewer plant east of town. And with the rapid growth of the city and an aging pump station, the Public Works Department is replacing the decades-old facility.
“Providing our residents and businesses with reliable service is critical and consistent with the city’s vision of 'Taking Care of Today for a Better Tomorrow,'" Mayor Paul TenHaken said in a statement Tuesday. “This investment will serve the city of Sioux Falls for the next 40 years.”
When the current facility, which processes an average of 20.9 million gallons of waste water per day, was built, the city was half the size it is today. So the new pump station, paid for through a bond approved by the City Council in April, will have the capacity to pump 65 million gallons of wastewater per day.