In May, Hillsborough County shared its 2020 water demand projections, which call for significantly more water by 2025 compared to its 2019 projections. The growth is mainly in south-central Hillsborough County, where development and population are booming.
“Tampa Bay Water has enough water to meet Hillsborough’s needs through the next five to eight years and has projects in the works to meet demands beyond that,” said Ken Herd, P.E., Tampa Bay Water’s chief science and technical officer. “Delivering that water to southern Hillsborough requires expansions to both the wholesale [Tampa Bay Water] and retail [Hillsborough County] systems.”
Tampa Bay Water has been coordinating closely with Hillsborough County to meet these increased demands. Tampa Bay Water is adding infrastructure to increase delivery capacity from our existing system and from new supplies, once they are developed: the High Service Pump Station expansion, the new Brandon Booster Station, and a new regional pipeline. Combined, these projects are able to carry up to an additional 50 million gallons per day (mgd) to southern Hillsborough County when completed. Additionally, Tampa Bay Water is working with the County on participation in Tampa Bay Water Wise, a demand management program that rewards homeowners and businesses for implementing water saving devices.
The expansion of the High Service Pump Station is currently underway and will be ready in early 2022. It involves installing a seventh pump and motor and will deliver an additional 22 mgd. The Brandon Booster Station is in the design phase and will deliver an additional 5-7 mgd from the regional wholesale system to Hillsborough County’s Lithia Water Treatment Plant when it is completed in 2024. The new pipeline, which will be online in 2028, is currently in the planning stages and will connect south Hillsborough County to the regional water supply system.
Increasing Flows to Southern Hillsborough
But Tampa Bay Water’s wholesale solutions alone won’t completely solve the problem in southern Hillsborough County. Hillsborough County is working on its own booster station, pipeline and other facilities to help distribute wholesale water to its retail customers and is taking steps to increase enforcement of outdoor water restrictions. In the meantime, Hillsborough County residents can help by using water wisely: