By The Value of Water Coalition

May 16, 2016

Water agencies join groups around the nation to address America’s deferred maintenance crisis and to highlight areas of innovation for new projects

Washington, D.C. – May 16, 2016 – Today the Value of Water Coalition kicked off Infrastructure Week and a national tour of innovators in the water sector. There is no doubt that the infrastructure crises facing our country are vast, from roads and rails, to ports and pipes. In the water sector, the infrastructure crisis comes in the form of systems that are a hundred years old-or older. There are water main breaks every two minutes across the country and severe stresses on systems, from flooding to drought, which make in increasingly difficult to maintain a safe, reliable water supply. But there are innovators advancing solutions to our nation’s water challenges.

The Value of Water Local Innovators Tour celebrates and spotlights innovative solutions to the nation’s water infrastructure crisis during Infrastructure Week (May 16-22). Participating cities will tell the story about why water infrastructure matters to their communities and the nation.

Cleveland, Ohio
Monday May 16 – Friday, May 20

Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District kicked off a week of activities with “Someone Forgot to Pay America’s Water Infrastructure Bill” presentation at the City Club of Cleveland on Wednesday May 11. Th activities continue with an up close and personal sewer walk for media, a green infrastructure tour for elected officials, and a “Sewer U” seminar series for the general public.

Norfolk, Virginia
Monday, May 16 – Friday, May 20

Hampton Roads Sanitation District takes you on a virtual tour of a $156 million project to upgrade its Virginia Initiative Plant (VIP) in Norfolk, VA by enhancing its ability to remove nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) from wastewater, increasing the hydraulic capacity so the plant can treat additional flows during storms, and replacing aging equipment to improve operations. See how this VIP project will protect public health, improve water quality, enhance reliable wastewater treatment and provide jobs for contractors and their suppliers.

Hampton Roads, Virginia
Monday, May 16 – 11am-Noon

The  Hampton Roads Sanitation District will host a groundbreaking ceremony for a new wastewater pump station, which will replace a facility that was first built in 1945. Speakers include the Honorable George Wallace, Mayor of the City of Hampton, and the Honorable Molly Joseph Ward, Virginia Secretary of Natural Resources.

Camden, New Jersey
Tuesday, May 17 – 11am-Noon

American Water and the City of Camden will host a press event to announce a major milestone in a public-private partnership to improve water and wastewater services, and provide workforce training and skill development in the community. Speakers include The Honorable Dana L. Redd, Mayor of the City of Camden and Sharon Cameron, President of American Water Enterprises, and others.

Alexandria, Virginia
Tuesday, May 17 – 11:30am-2:30pm and Thursday May 19 – 10:30am-1:00pm

Behind-the-scenes tours for press and elected officials will demonstrate how Alexandria Renew Enterprises transforms 13 billion gallons of wastewater each year into reclaimed water, clean energy, and nutrient-rich soil amendment. The tour will also preview the new LEED Platinum Environmental Center and innovative nutrient management facility and adjacent athletic field, the only one of its kind in the country.

Chicago, Illinois
Saturday, May 21 – 9:00am-Noon

A day of open houses is scheduled at six of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago’s six water treatment plants across the Chicago region. The open houses offer an exclusive look at plant operations and stormwater management practices. MWRD is also giving away hundreds of free potted oak tree saplings to restore the region’s depleted canopy and help reduce flooding.

Infrastructure Week 2016 is led by a steering committee consisting of the AFL-CIO, the American Society of Civil Engineers, Building America’s Future, Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program, the National Association of Manufacturers, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the Value of Water Coalition.