Billings Plant Upgrade Largest in MT History
Billings is preparing for the largest public works upgrade in Montana history. The $65 million wastewater treatment plant project represents an improvement in technology, improved odor control, and the approval of state regulators concerning what’s being discharged into the Yellowstone River.
Utility systems engineer Louis Engel of the Billings Public Works Department said last week that odor control alone will comprise up to $9 million of the project, which will go to bid Dec. 13. Construction is set to begin this spring and be completed two years later. The plant treats the sewage generated by the city of Billings.
The Montana Department of Environmental Quality has set a deadline of 2019 for reducing the amount of nitrogen and phosphorous that the plant can discharge into the river. Nitrogen and phosphorous serve as fertilizers that promote algae bloom. Sewer rates have increased to provide enough money to upgrade the plant.