Mayor Campbell Cuts the Ribbon on $70 Million Water Treatment Facility


Mayor Campbell cuts the ribbon with help from her staff

K. Rambo

The new Ames water treatment plant is open for business.

The parking lot in front of the new facility was full as hundreds of community members crowded the entrance to watch Mayor Ann Campbell cut the ribbon and be some of the first members of the public to tour the facility. Within the facility were demonstrations, exhibits and refreshments.

The 115,000 square foot facility, which cost $70 million and took over nearly three years to construct, can pump 15 million gallons of water a day to the city of Ames. The water is drawn from wells and treated before being distributed for use within the city, including Iowa State.

The facility was built to be sustainable and have lower operating costs, from the HVAC system to the tinted glass used for the windows.

John R. Dunn, the director of the plant, spoke to the crowd detailing the process, which was rooted in collaboration and innovation. Dunn explained that everyone who will work at the plant was consulted in the construction, which may have added to the amount of time needed to complete the project, but heralded better results.

Among the companies who took part in the opening of the new facility were FOX Engineering, based in Ames, Knutson Construction, which has an office in Cedar Rapids, Barr Engineering, of Minneapolis, Minnesota, and HDR Inc. of Omaha, Nebraska.

“About 80 percent of our engineers went to Iowa State,” said Terry Lynch, director of marketing at FOX Engineering.

The Iowa State connections didn’t stop there.

“It’s pretty exciting for me personally,” said Chris Terry, vice president of Knutson Construction. “My family is third generation Iowa State people, my son is here now as a sophomore, my nephew is here, so it’s been great for me to come back and remember this site.”

Terry said that over 64 million pounds of concrete and three million pounds of rebar were used in the construction of the facility.