Our region currently has enough drinking water to last for the next 10 to15 years. The region is enjoying a surplus, thanks to the continued planning efforts of Tampa Bay Water and its member governments.
To ensure we always have an adequate supply, Tampa Bay Water closely tracks demand. Each year, the agency forecasts demand for the near-term and long-term. The forecast includes a variety of data, including economic indicators, demographic information, population figures and more.
Based on the latest demand projections, Tampa Bay Water will need a new water source online around 2025-2030. To meet that timeframe, we are continuing to update our Long-Term Master Water Plan, a framework for meeting the region’s future drinking water needs.
This effort is expected to result in a 2018 selection of new water supply projects to serve the region. It takes approximately 10 years to study, permit, design and construct a new water supply. Feasibility studies will be conducted over the next few years and a short-list of technically feasible, economical and environmentally sustainable projects will be presented to the Board in 2018 for review and selection.
Stakeholder input is an important element of the planning process. Tampa Bay Water meets regularly with its member government staff. Public input was solicited last year through an online survey as well as during meetings with local chambers of commerce, Sierra Clubs, the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council and other interested community groups.
Once the list of potential projects is narrowed down to the most feasible, Tampa Bay Water will solicit additional public input.