Sault Ste. Marie PUC
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Sault Ste. Marie Drinking Water System

The Sault Ste. Marie Drinking Water System (SSM DWS) serves a population of approximately 74,000 (within the Urban Service Line area) of the City of Sault Ste. Marie and Rankin Indian Reserve. Typical annual water pumpage is in the order of 13.5 million cubic meters per year and maximum peak day is in the range of 65,000 cubic meters.

Water for the greater Sault Ste. Marie area is presently obtained from two independent sources. One source of supply is from six deep wells in 4 pumping stations located at the Steelton Pump Station, Goulais Pump Station, Shannon Pump Station and Lorna Pump Station. The well at Steelton is 25 meters deep, Goulais wells are 55 meters deep, Shannon well is 102 meters deep and Lorna wells are 53 meters deep. The water pumped from the wells is disinfected and pumped directly to the distribution system.

All four pump stations utilize chlorine for primary and secondary disinfection. Water from groundwater sources are provided by 6 deep wells at 4 different locations. Two of the well sites are located in the West areas of the city, while the other two are in the eastern part of the city. Water quality and quantity within the aquifer are both excellent with very little fluctuation of both throughout the year.

The second source is from Lake Superior at Gros Cap. The intake structure, located in 15 meters of water is connected to the Raw Water Pumping Station by 830 meters of 1200mm diameter polyethylene pipe. The raw water from Lake Superior is pumped to the twin control tanks on Marshall Drive and then flows by gravity through a 750mm diameter concrete watermain to the Water Treatment Plant (filtration plant).

The difference in elevation between the pumping station at Gros Cap and the control tanks at Marshall Drive is 40 meters, while the difference in elevation between the control tanks and the treatment plant inlet is 20 meters. The filtration plant is of the direct filtration type incorporating chemically assisted coagulation, flocculation and dual media filtration but with no sedimentation. The plant is located on the south side of Second Line between Town Line Road and Carpin Beach Road immediately east of the Little Carp River. The plant is rated at 40,000 m3 per day but is capable of operating at higher levels for extended periods at times of high demand, subject to contact time limitations.

The complete water supply system, including the Gros Cap Pumping Station, deep wells and filtration plant, are monitored and controlled through a SCADA system from the Control Room at the Water Treatment Plant. There is a central process controller and data logging facility along with a graphic panel indicating the plant and the distribution system components.

The surface water treatment plant is rated at 40,000 cubic meters/day, using chemically assisted filtration and chlorination for treatment and primary disinfection. Secondary disinfection is achieved through chlorination. The plant has the ability to introduce ammonia into the treated water line as the water leaves the plant for chloramination, however the process has been discontinued since October, 2011.

Distribution System

The distribution system is divided into two pressure zones (Pressure Zone Map); one below the escarpment and the second above. A 27,275 m3 reservoir located on Second Line west of Highway 17 North provides balancing storage for the pressure zone (Zone 1) below the escarpment. Pressure for Zone 2, above the escarpment, is provided by a 9,000 m3 reservoir located on Peoples Road at Coronation Drive. There are four identified booster pumping stations which provide water pressure for their respective areas. These include the Zone II Booster, Coronation St. Booster, Crimson Ridge Booster, and the People's Road Booster.

Sizes of mains vary from 900 mm diameter down to 50 mm diameter to provide a total length of approximately 470 km of distribution mains. Approximate breakdown of major pipe materials includes 51% cast iron, 26% ductile iron, 14 % PVC and 9% concrete pressure pipe.

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