City Services

Water Treatment Plant


The $18,000,000 Summerland Water Treatment Plant (WTP) was completed in 2007. The WTP utilizes a proprietary 'Actiflo' water treatment process that uses ballasted sand which results in rapid settling of particles that have been bonded together by chemical addition. This process effectively removes the colour and particulate matter from the Trout Creek water source and with filtration, can reduce the water turbidity from levels of greater than 20 NTU to less than 0.20 NTU.

During design of the WTP the decision was made to limit plant capacity as it was felt that treating water for irrigation purposes was an unnecessary and expensive alternative. The WTP capacity was designed at 75 ML/day which is sufficient to service a population of 50,000, more than enough to cover Summerland’s growth projections. The problem is that summer demands for Summerland, including irrigation, can reach 112 Megalitres/day which exceeds WTP capacity. The shortfall in WTP capacity can be made up in a combination of ways:

  • Increase WTP capacity through increasing the process rate,
  • Separate the irrigation demand off of the water system so that the plant can provide high quality water to domestic customers only; and
  • Increase the WTP capacity through expansion of the facility.

Since 2007, Water System Operators have been working diligently to optimize plant capacity and to improve overall performance. Several of the significant issues that have been resolved are:

  • A sludge handling and residuals management system has been installed and performs to expectations,
  • Background testing has shown no buildup of contaminants in the wasted water during sludge handling so this water is now permitted to be recycled back to the head of the WTP which has reduced water wastage to less than 2% of the maximum day demand,
  • Installation of regulators on the power supply before it enters the plant has resulted in a significant reduction in motor failures,
  • Chemical reductions due to increased plant efficiencies have significantly reduced operating costs, and
  • Operator training continues on an ongoing basis.

Sludge Handling and Residuals Management System

The sludge handling and residual management system is an integral component of the WTP. This system deals with the colour and particulate matter that is removed as part of the treatment process and is diverted to the waste stream for treatment. There are two parts to the sludge handling and residual management system as follows:

  • The settling ponds, and
  • The thickening and drying beds.

The settling ponds are located just above the WTP and are the first stage of sludge handling and residual management system. These ponds allow the colour and particulate matter to settle out of the residual stream and settle at the bottom of the ponds. The settled material is augured out of the ponds and pumed up to the thickening and drying beds. The clear water above the settled material is decanted off the ponds and sent back to the head of the WTP for treatment.

The thickening and drying beds are located higher above the WTP in a gravel pit just above Bathville Road. The material that has been pumped up from the settling ponds is placed in the thickening beds which allows further settling to take place. Clear water is decanted off the thickening beds and once the ponds are full the settled material is moved to the drying beds. The drying beds allow for removal of the remaining water in the settled material through evaporation. Once dry the material is hauled to the Landfill to be used as cover material.

More Information

Click here to view the WTP Flow Chart (1MB PDF).

To Contact the Works and Utilities Department:

Phone: 250-494-0431
Fax: 250-494-3399
After-hours emergency: 250-493-0005

     General Inquiries at
     Water Division at