Celebration Held for $21 Million Water Infrastructure Project on Lake Arlington
By Traci Peterson, Water Utilities
Posted on May 16, 2022, May 16, 2022

Officials from the City of Arlington and the Trinity River Authority of Texas (TRA) gathered in Arlington Monday to celebrate the completion of a $21 million capital improvement project that will help provide tap water to more than half a million North Texas residents. 

The new Lake Arlington Raw Water Pump Station is the result of an innovative partnership between Arlington Water Utilities and TRA, both of which use Lake Arlington as a source of raw water for their water treatment plants. Arlington Water’s Pierce-Burch Water Treatment Plant supplies water to Arlington’s more than 390,000 residents. TRA’s Tarrant County Water Supply Project supplies water to five customer cities in Tarrant County – Bedford, Colleyville, Euless, Grapevine, and North Richland Hills.

Arlington and TRA had been operating separate pump stations at Lake Arlington for 40 years. When extensive updates were needed at both of their facilities, the two tap water providers decided to put their pumping operations together under one roof in an updated modern facility. TRA and Arlington split the cost of the project, in which Arlington’s old pump station was expanded and remodeled.

Speaking at Monday’s event, Arlington Mayor Jim Ross thanked those involved for doing “the right thing for our community” by working together and saving millions of dollars in building costs.

“That is exactly the way that government is supposed to work. Kudos to you Arlington Water Utilities and TRA,” Ross said. “Thank you so much for taking care of our residents.”

TRA General Manager Kevin Ward said: “It was easy working with Arlington because we were already good neighbors, and we share a vision and commitment toward doing what is in the best interest of our growing area.”

Six vertical turbine pumps to pull water from the lake are a key part of the new station. Three of the pumps serve Arlington. Three serve TRA's Tarrant County Water Supply Project. The pumps can be run all at once in times of peak demand. A 60-inch pipe on the south side of the plant sends water to Arlington's Pierce-Burch Water Treatment Plant. Another 60-inch pipe on the northside feeds water to the TRA's water treatment facility.

North Texas firms that worked on the project included Freese and Nichols, Inc., of Fort Worth; Arcadis U.S., of Dallas; and Archer Western Construction LLC, of Irving. Arlington Water Utilities oversaw the construction process. Now that the building is complete, Arlington and TRA will continue their water provider duties separately but split the station’s operational costs. 

The new station includes state-of-the-art equipment to prepare for future growth and emerging issues in Texas such as the spread of zebra mussels, a small, invasive shellfish that can colonize and clog water pipes. Project planners included the $345,000 zebra mussel mitigation system for future use. The invasive species has spread to numerous lakes throughout Texas in recent years, including others in Tarrant County. Once detected in a lake, zebra mussel infestations could cause millions of dollars in damage to water intake systems. 

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