Columbus, NJ

The Challenge

In 1999, NSU acquired the community’s existing wastewater facility, a system designed for the 1,200-residence community for adults 55 and older. The community is located on a 295-acre site surrounded by sprawling grounds and the facility is permitted to discharge 250,000 gpd to the Assiscunk Creek, a NJ DEP designated Category 1 waterway in the State. The designation means that the waterway is of significant environmental importance to the watershed and to the wildlife depending on it for sustenance and therefore, extra care must be taken during the discharge stage of the treatment process.

The Solution

Over the next six years NSU conducted a series of upgrades developed in conjunction with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and aided by a grant from the New Jersey 1981 Water Supply State Bond Fund. The most recent upgrades made to the wastewater treatment system enable the delivery of high-quality recycled water that will be used to maintain the residential grounds as well as achieve multiple state goals related to Smart Growth.

NSU provides overall O&M services at the Mansfield treatment plant. The wastewater treatment process consists of two large partial mix aerated lagoons followed by a Lamella plate settling unit sand filtration, break point chlorination, dechlorination, and post aeration prior to discharge to surface water.

The Results

In May of 2005, NSU received a Category 1 Reclaimed Water for Beneficial Reuse (RWBR) permit modification to its existing facility discharge permit and a Treatment Works Approval (TWA) in June 2005. Effluent disposal meets all New Jersey DSW and RWBR water quality standards. The reuse project reclaims the treated effluent wastewater, and discharges the reuse water to two on-site storage ponds that feed the community’s irrigation system. The irrigation system, previously fed by potable water, is used for irrigation of lawns and community common areas. The reuse system which has been in operation since 2006, was the first water reuse project put into service in New Jersey and was awarded the Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence.

< back to case studies