Albany-Millersburg Water Reclamation Facility Recognized as Project of the Year by Oregon ACWA and Recipient of the Excellence in Resource Recovery and Sustainability Award by PNCWA, Composting Biosolids and Keeping Waste Out of Landfills
The City of Albany (City), Oregon’s Albany-Millersburg Water Reclamation Facility (A-M WRF) biosolids composting facility, designed by Kennedy Jenks (KJ), was recently named “Project of the Year” by the Oregon Association of Clean Water Agencies (ACWA) and the recipient of the Excellence in Resource Recovery and Sustainability Award by the Pacific Northwest Clean Water Association (PNCWA) for its innovative and sustainable treatment of biosolids. The composting facility turns untreated solids into a Class A Exceptional Quality (EQ) compost product that can be used as a soil amendment in gardens, landscapes, crops, and more.
These awards, given annually, highlight projects that make a difference in communities in the Pacific Northwest, demonstrating environmental leadership, innovative environmental management, and other contributions to their respective communities.
With KJ’s design of the A-M WRF biosolids compost facility constructed and now up and running, the plant is currently composting approximately 25 percent of its solids and may expand to treat up to 100 percent of the current solids loading in future phases. Constructed using eco-friendly and cost-effective materials, the composting facility is made from fabric-style buildings and eco-block walls, providing flexibility and cost-savings for the City and its taxpayers.
The design at the A-M WRF took into consideration a lot of what we were looking to solve – having a reliable process to treat our biosolids into a usable product rather than disposing at the landfill, as well as minimizing truck traffic and odors for our neighbors. It’s saving the City and our residents money and is a more sustainable and effective solution.
KJ started working on the project in 2015 through a solids alternatives analysis, biosolids pilot project, and a comprehensive engineering feasibility study. Ultimately, the City selected a composting process to treat its untreated, dewatered solids.
After leading the City through preliminary and final design of the biosolids composting facility, KJ also assisted with construction management oversight. Construction began in May 2021 and the facility was fully operational by the fall of 2022.
“This project is very important to the City and citizens of the community,” explains Mark Cullington, Vice President and Kennedy Jenks Project Manager. “A lot of thought and collaboration went into every element of the project from responsible spending to a sustainable facility build. Our KJ team lives and works in the Willamette Valley–this project is personal to them, too.”
Albany is Oregon’s Hub City, ideally located in the center of the Willamette Valley just over an hour south of Portland, an hour from the central coast, and a few short hours to Bend. The City of Albany provides quality public services every day for a growing and dynamic Albany community of over 56,000.