5th Street East Recycled Water Pipeline Construction Under Way

    Sonoma Valley Recycled Water pipeline diagram

    Project will bring recycled water to Sonoma Valley High School

    The Sonoma Valley County Sanitation District (SVCSD) has started construction of a recycled water pipeline that will send water from the SVCSD wastewater treatment plant on Eighth Street East to Sonoma Valley High School. The recycled water will help irrigate the playing fields at each school, offsetting potable water used for irrigation and providing high-quality, cost-effective, and sustainable drought-proof water. A number of residents along the pipeline route will also be receiving water from the pipeline for irrigation.

    The pipeline construction route will begin at Watmaugh and Shainsky roads, proceed east to 5th Street East, and then extend north for approximately a mile to Denmark Street. (A short pipeline will extend from Denmark Street west on Engler Street for irrigation of the neighborhood park.) At Denmark and 5th Street East, it will then extend west to the Sonoma Valley High School campus. Construction of the pipeline will take place in the roadway and there will be some disruption of normal traffic patterns. Traffic controls will be in place during construction and detours will be clearly marked by the contractor. At certain times during the project, roads may be closed to through traffic, but will be kept open to local traffic and emergency vehicles. Construction hours within the City of Sonoma will be 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. within county areas. Work will normally take place Monday-Friday, with occasional weekend work depending on project progress. Work is expected to be completed by January 2017.

    For questions or concerns about construction activities, contact: Jim Flugum, 707.738.2624, Jim.Flugum@scwa.ca.gov or Barry Dugan, 707.547.1930, barry.dugan@scwa.ca.gov 

    Project Facts

    • Miles of pipe to be constructed: 1.5
    • Pipeline path: Pipe to be installed along Watmaugh Rd East of Shainsky Rd to 5th Street East, then North along 5th Street East to Denmark Street and continuing west along Denmark Street to Sonoma Valley High School. A small section of pipeline will also be installed from Denmark Street along Engler Street to irrigate the neighborhood park.
    • Type of pipeline: PVC

    Draft Construction Schedule

    • Summer 2016: Project construction starts.
    • Winter 2016-17: Project construction complete


    The total cost of the project is approximately $3 million. The project has been awarded to receive $1.02 million funding grant from the California Department of Water Resources Proposition 84 through the Bay Area Integrated Regional Water Management Plan. The remaining cost will come from leveraging other grant programs and the District’s capital improvement budget.

    What is recycled water?

    Water is continually recycled in nature through the water cycle. Modern wastewater treatment replicates the natural recycling process to restore large quantities of water quickly and effectively. In Sonoma, water from showers, sinks and toilets inside homes and offices travels through pipes to the Sonoma Valley County Sanitation District (SVCSD), where it is treated to tertiary recycled water standards (also referred to as advanced wastewater treatment), which is the highest level of treatment defined by the State of California, Department of Public Health (Title 22). The wastewater goes through primary treatment, biological treatment, filtration, and disinfection before it is considered tertiary recycled water.

    Why use recycled water? 

    For every gallon of recycled water that is used, a gallon of potable drinking water is saved. Utilizing recycled water for urban and agricultural irrigation helps offset potable water use and provide a high-quality, cost-effective, and sustainable drought-proof source of water. 

    How is recycled water currently used?

    Tertiary treated recycled water is safe to use for the irrigation of agricultural crops, vegetable crops that are eaten raw, vineyards, playgrounds, golf courses, parks, cemeteries, and many more urban uses. In Sonoma County, recycled water is used to irrigate agriculture, lawns at school playgrounds and parks, in decorative fountains, and in residential landscaping.

    Recycled water is used in many places and for many uses around Sonoma County. Recycled water is used across Sonoma County for agriculture, including vineyards and other crops in Sonoma Valley. Some cities in Sonoma County also used recycled water for their playing fields. In Windsor some residential neighborhoods use recycled water in their landscaping. Some other recycled water uses around Sonoma County include:

    • Rohnert Park Evergreen Elementary
    • Rohnert Park Rancho Cotati High School
    • Rohnert Park Santa Alicia
    • Rohnert Park John Reed Elementary
    • Rohnert Park Technology High School
    • Rohnert Park Waldo Rohnert Elementary School
    • Rohnert Park Monte Vista Elementary
    • Rohnert Park Lawrence Jones Middle School
    • Rohnert Park El Colegio School
    • Santa Rosa Parks: A Place to Play and Finely Park
    • Santa Rosa Oakmont Golf Course
    • Santa Rosa Junior College Shone Farm
    • Windsor Vintage Green Subdivision residential landscaping
    • Windsor High School Playing Fields
    • Windsor Golf Course

    Sign up for Email Updates

    Stay updated with the project news, schedule and more via email 


    More Information About Recycled Water

    Contact Information