Recycled Water

Recycled Water Pipeline & Strategic Plan


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Regional Map of Recycled Water Pipeline

The City of Palo Alto’s Recycled Water Program began in the early 1980s. The City’s objectives for the Recycled Water Program are to conserve potable water by providing an alternative supply of high quality recycled water for irrigation and other non-potable uses. The City’s Regional Water Quality Control Plant (RWQCP) produces recycled water for its 6 partner agencies: East Palo Alto Sanitary District, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Mountain View, Palo Alto, and Stanford. The City of Palo Alto recycled water pipeline distributes recycled water from the RWQCP to the City of Mountain View and numerous City of Palo Alto facilities (including the Municipal Golf Course, Municipal Services Center, Animal Services Facility, and Greer Park). Recycled water is available for pickup by residents and businesses at the RWQCP for permitted uses or through permitted truck haulers. Learn more about the City’s recycled water and other non-potable water sources.

Currently, the recycled water pipeline is not available for direct connections to Palo Alto residents or businesses.  The City of Palo Alto is evaluating ways to offer this service in the future under the Northwest County Recycled Water Strategic Plan project.  The Northwest County Recycled Water Strategic Plan is a collaborative project between the City of Palo Alto RWQCP, the Santa Clara Valley Water District, and consultants that seeks to identify the most appropriate ways and locations to expand the City of Palo Alto’s Recycled Water Program.  Included in the project is the continued evaluation of a potential expansion of the recycled water pipeline to the Stanford Research Park area as well as a groundwater study to evaluate the feasibility of potable reuse, refer to below sections for project task updates.  The Northwest County Recycled Water Strategic Plan project began in December 2016 and is scheduled for completion in 2020.

Northwest County Recycled Water Strategic Plan Task Updates:

Task 1: Project Coordination & Administration 
    Project began in December 2016 and scheduled to be completed by December 2020

Task 2: Recycled Water Phase III Expansion Project Business Plan & Preliminary Design: 
       - Final EIR Response to Comments

       - Draft EIR Volume 1 Draft

       - EIR Volume 2, Appendices

  - Final Business Plan

  - Final Preliminary Design Report

  - August 2018 Utilities Advisory Commission Staff Report

Task 3: Northwest County Indirect Potable Reuse Feasibility Study & Groundwater Use Assessment

  - Slides and sign-in sheet from the June 8, 2017 public stakeholder meeting

  - Slides and sign-in sheet from the October 23, 2017 public stakeholder meeting

  - Final Groundwater Assessment and Indirect Potable Reuse Feasibility Evaluation and Implementation Strategy

Task 4: Recycled Water Strategic Planning

- October 2018 Utilities Advisory Commission Staff Report

- November 2018 City Council Study Session Staff Report

        - Slides and sign-in sheet from the April 30, 2019 public stakeholder meeting

  - Northwest County Recycled Water Strategic Plan Interim Report

  - Northwest County Recycled Water Strategic Plan Appendices


Task 5: Funding Identification

  Below is a summary of the funding opportunities applied for to date under this project:

  - Title XVI WIIN 2017 Funding Announcement, Phase III Pipeline project, not awarded

  - Title XVI WIIN 2018 Funding Announcement, 2.25 MGD AWPS project, not awarded

  - San Francisco Bay Area Integrated Water Management Prop 1, 2.25 MGD AWPS project, in progress

For more information call Samantha Engelage, Senior Engineer at 650.329.2123 or email recycledwater@CityofPaloAlto.org.