Water Infrastructure Program

With the goal of increasing the reliability of drinking water for water customers now and generations to come, the City of Poway is undertaking the largest capital improvement program (CIP) in the city’s 40-year history. 

Read the July 2022 Update

Water Projects Overview

The CIP will include replacing the clearwell (water storage reservoir) at the water treatment plant and a new San Diego County Water Authority (SDCWA) treated water connection and redundant pipeline. In order to replace the clearwell, a bypass system consisting of two 1.4 million-gallon tanks, pipelines, a pump station and other appurtenances will be constructed. 

These infrastructure improvement projects have been in the planning stage for a long time and are moving ahead as part of a mutual agreement between Poway and the State Division of Drinking Water.

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Project Timeline
March 2021Update to City Council on project status
September 2021Temporary Bypass Project begins
August 2022 Temporary Bypass Project construction completion (tentative)
February 2023Clearwell Replacement Project start of construction (tentative)
Fall 2024Clearwell Replacement Project construction completion (tentative)
Spring 2024Treated Water Connection Project start of construction (tentative)
Summer 2025Treated Water Connection Project construction completion (tentative)

Temporary Bypass Project

The first project is constructing the temporary bypass for storing treated water. After evaluating all the options, the site that was determined to best meet the criteria was the ballfield at Lake Poway. The ballfield is immediately adjacent to the water treatment plant and has a graded pad to accommodate the temporary tanks. No other location provided the space and proximity without major modifications. 

Work will begin in September 2021 and the bypass system is anticipated to be completed by August 2022.

Anticipated impacts at Lake Poway:

  • The ballfield will be used for temporary water storage tanks and likely unavailable for use through Fall 2024. 
  • The parking lot adjacent to the volleyball courts is currently open but will be used as a staging area for the Clearwell Replacement Project (February 2023 through Fall 2024). This will reduce overall parking capacity by 38 spots.
  • The parking lot off Lake Poway Road, which is used for overflow parking on the weekends, is currently closed. The lot will temporarily reopen Fall 2022, then close for the duration of the Clearwell Replacement Project (February 2023 through Fall 2024).

The city will work with the project contractors to develop a construction plan that limits the impact to neighborhoods adjacent to Lake Poway, as well as park guests. Once the clearwell is replaced and the temporary tanks are removed, the ballfield will be restored back to its original condition.

temporary treated water bypass construction illustration

Clearwell Replacement Project

The clearwell replacement project consists of replacing the existing clearwell with two new reservoirs. The existing clearwell has reached the end of its useful life and is in need of replacement to maintain reliable service to Poway water customers. The overflow structure of the clearwell will also be replaced with a new structure designed with proper air gaps. The Clearwell Replacement Project is currently under design. Tentative construction schedule: February 2023 through Fall 2024.new treated water facility illustration

SDCWA Treated Water Connection/Redundant Pipeline

The SDCWA treated water connection and redundant pipeline project provides Poway with its first treated water connection to the SDCWA's treated water aqueduct, as well as providing redundant pipelines. This project will help diversify Poway's water supply portfolio and allow for operational flexibility and plant maintenance. It will also provide a redundant pipeline to the 36" water transmission line on Lake Poway Road, which is currently the single transmission line that carries treated water to the distribution system. 

The Poway City Council will consider approval of the engineering design agreements during the April 5, 2022 City Council meeting. The City is also working with SDCWA to evaluate alternatives to reduce the cost of this project.

Tentative construction schedule: TBD. The earliest start of construction is Summer 2024.

Project Update: July 2022

[Week of July 18] The temporary treated water storage tanks on the Lake Poway ballfield are almost ready to go into service. Last week the two tanks were filled, disinfected, and tested for bacteria. One of the final steps before the temporary pipeline can connect the tanks to the water treatment plant is a controlled flushing. This is a California Water Works regulation and must be completed.

The majority of the pipeline flushing is expected to take place during the week of July 18, with additional pipeline flushing possible over the following weeks. Staff from Public Works water operations and stormwater divisions will be working with the contractor during this process and be in the field monitoring the flow of water. The flushed water will flow through Poway’s existing stormwater infrastructure. 


For More Information

For questions about the water infrastructure projects, please contact Community Outreach Coordinator Rene Carmichael at 858-668-4506 or by email.

May 10 Town Hall