Wharton-Smith Wins Eagle Awards For Innovative Water Projects


Sanford, FL – October 14, 2016 – Wharton-Smith recently received the prestigious Eagle Award bestowed by the Central Florida Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractor’s (ABC) Excellence in Construction Awards program on two projects: The City of Tarpon Springs Reverse Osmosis Facility and Supply Systems and the City of Altamonte Springs – FDOT Integrated Reuse and Stormwater Treatment (A-FIRST). The Eagle Award is the Chapter’s highest recognition. Team members for both projects were honored at ABC’s annual awards presentation banquet on October 8th in Orlando.

For over a decade, the City of Tarpon Springs has worked towards finding its own independent water supply. The new alternative water facility at Tarpon Springs is the City’s first water plant which has made this dream a reality. The City of Tarpon Springs Reverse Osmosis Facility and Supply Systems project, constructed by the design-build team of Wharton-Smith, TetraTech and Harn R/O, is a complex, $36 million project consisting of a reverse osmosis water treatment facility, the outfitting of 15 wells with pumps, raw water transmission pipelines, and a concentrate disposal pipeline. The project also includes an operations building including labs, offices, electrical rooms, RO skids, etc., and a 5 million gallons (MG) water storage tank with an internal 2.5 MG separate tank. The City of Tarpon Springs has a population of about 25,000 and the new plant produces up to 6.4 million gallons of water per day.

The award-winning A-FIRST project is part of an innovative stormwater management initiative developed by the City of Altamonte Springs to harness stormwater runoff from I-4 and use it for irrigation as an alternative to taking water from the aquifer. The A-FIRST project prevents up to 1.5 million gallons per day (MGD) of stormwater and 3 MGD of highly treated excess reclaimed water from reaching the Little Wekiva River while also providing up to 4.5 MGD of reclaimed water for irrigation for Altamonte Springs and the neighboring City of Apopka. It is the first time that runoff from a major highway in Florida has been collected and repurposed in this way and the first project of its kind to be implemented in the United States. The project consisted of a new stormwater treatment facility, along with major modifications to the stormwater pump station, construction of a flow control assembly for automated control of the discharge rate, a new stormwater forcemain, and connection of the Reuse Augmentation Facility to the City’s reclaimed water distribution system.

Wharton-Smith was also awarded Merit Awards for the $27 million Seminole County Sports Complex, and the Cypress Creek High School Phase 4 project.

The Central Florida Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Excellence in Construction Awards program recognizes and celebrates outstanding projects in the region. Projects are evaluated by judges representing a cross-section of the industry and judged on execution of design, quality of craftsmanship, attention to detail, proper installation, outstanding planning and coordination efforts, challenges successfully overcome, project complexity, custom materials, safety, and owner satisfaction.