On Dec. 6 , 2022, the City of Pierre began distributing water from the City’s new Water Treatment Plant located near the Missouri River bridge in southwest Pierre.
According to Gidget Palmer, City Project Manager, this is the beginning of a transition that will take several weeks to complete.
“It’s not possible to shut off well water and turn on treated water using the same distribution pipes; the two sources will comingle in the distribution system for a bit,” said Palmer. “People will notice a gradual change in their water over the next two to three weeks as the old water makes its way out of the system.”
To help expedite that transition, the City is flushing water from hydrants. No action is required from the general population.
“Once the transition is complete and the well water has been cleared from the system, people will start to notice softer water with less mineral content,” Palmer said. “Rust remover shouldn’t be needed and people can likely back off their softener salt a bit.”
Mayor Steve Harding is celebrating the milestone.
“This is a huge step forward for the City and our quality of life!” said Harding. “After decades of well water, we have moved to a modern process that I fully expect will serve our community well for generations.”
Following a community survey that showed Pierre citizens were interested in improved drinking water, the City of Pierre commissioned a study to provide options for a new water treatment process. The study recommended the City build a water treatment facility near the Missouri River highway bridge. In June 2018, the City Commission put the project to a public vote; it was approved by 73% of voters. In July 2020, the Commission approved the design for the $37.5 million project.
The beginning of distribution from the water treatment plant marks the switch from the City’s previous well water source to the new treatment process using Missouri River surface water.