The CID owns and operates a 200,000 gallon per day facility which treats the wastewater generated within the community and produces high quality reclaimed water which is used for irrigation. The wastewater treatment plant includes membrane filtration producing reclaimed water which is of a quality considerably cleaner than the water in the Faka Union Canal which used to be the source of irrigation water for the community. In addition, due to the unique location of Port of the Islands being totally surrounded by State and Federal preserves, there are no options for discharge of treated wastewater to the environment.
All of the groundwater in the vicinity of the District is reserved under State law for the natural environment other than what is permitted for withdrawal by the CID as long as it operates a system which maximizes water conservation through programs such as reuse of treated wastewater effluent. Therefore, the CID wastewater treatment facility is a very important part of an overall environmental protection and water conservation program. This facility was initially constructed in 1992 with substantial upgrades and modernization in 2012. This facility has the capacity to handle needs of the community during peak tourist season at build-out.
The CID owns and operates a 320 gallon per minute facility which treats groundwater from wells located north of the community. Groundwater in the vicinity of the District is replenished from wetlands surrounding Port of the Islands. As a result, the raw water supply has a high concentration of naturally occurring organic matter and a high concentration of dissolved solids such as those which are commonly referred to as hardness in water.
The water treatment plant includes use of reverse osmosis membranes capable of removing dissolved solids and naturally occurring organic matter. The water produced by this facility is of an extremely high quality. This facility was constructed in 2013 and replaced an outdated facility which was first installed prior to 1980 to serve another community and relocated to Port of the Islands in 1993. Not only was the old facility not able to meet the current State and Federal requirements for water treatment, it also was beyond the point where it could be maintained from a structural basis. The new water treatment facility has the capacity to meet the needs of the community during peak tourist season at build-out.
The wastewater generated from residences at Port of the Islands is collected in gravity sewers, but due to the flat terrain, must then be collected by wet wells for lift stations (pumping stations) which then pump the wastewater to the wastewater treatment plant. There currently are a total of eight lift stations at Port of the Islands. As is typical for mechanical and electronic equipment which must operate 24 hours a day, 365 days per year, they require ongoing maintenance and periodically require equipment replacement/modernization.
As part of the modernization program, the CID implemented a phased program to upgrade the electrical service and control panels at these lift stations. This provides an upgrade in reliability of service for the community allowing the wastewater operator to monitor these lift stations remotely at any time and be notified through computer and cell phone technology when immediate attention may be needed.
Most of the streets in the District were resurfaced within the past ten years. This process has been delayed on Union Road in order to wait until after the development of the northern portion of Port of the Islands is substantially complete. The CID and the owner of the property located north of Orchid Cove entered into an agreement in which the CID would allow the developer to relocate Union Road at the time of development (at their expense) which would best allow utilization of the presently undeveloped property while continuing to provide access to the Gun Club and the District’s water and wastewater treatment plant. As a result, the CID continues to provide ongoing maintenance (grading) of the gravel portion of Union Road as well as patching of the asphalt pavement as necessary. The most recent maintenance was performed in early 2015.