The City of Salida sits right in the middle of the state of Colorado in the Upper Arkansas River Valley, beautifully settled in the "Heart of the Rockies." Lonnie Oversole is plant manager for the water treatment facility that serves the approximately 6,000 residents of the City of Salida and supports the influx of visitors that are critical to the area's economy. In recent years, Oversole became frustrated by the consistently short filtration run-times and the large amount of water wasted by the four dual-cell Wheeler bottom filters used to clean the region's drinking water. In an area with a history of dry seasons and drought-like conditions, the need to carefully conserve water is particularly critical.
The plant worked with SGM Engineering to research and compare the various options and service providers available in order to make recommendations to Oversole regarding the best solution to improve process efficiency. In the end, Xylem’s Leopold Type XA™ underdrain with I.M.S® 200 media retainer, new filter media (12” silica sand/18” anthracite), and wash troughs, emerged as the top choice. Oversole and his team were particularly attracted to Leopold’s I.M.S® media retainer, which eliminates the need for the support gravel used with older equipment while increasing the filter depth and freeboard. A smooth installation by Moltz Construction concluded in May 2014.