Historical Timeline

  • 1930’s

    Three main tunnel sewers constructed (Locust Street, Dublin Lane and Center Street).

  • 1956

    Three main lift stations (Locust Street, Dublin Lane and Center Street) constructed to convey sewage from the tunnel sewers to a newly constructed West Water Reclamation Facility. Prior to the construction of the plant and lift stations, all sewage was discharged untreated to the Ohio River.

  • 1974

    Major renovation to West Water Reclamation Facility that included the implementation of biological secondary treatment.

  • 1984-85

    East Water Reclamation Facility constructed and received only sanitary flow that had been redirected from the existing combined system. This project began RWRA’s approach to improving conditions within the combined system and to reduce CSO discharges.

  • 1985-present

    RWRA has constructed numerous projects to redirect sanitary sewage from the combined system to the constructed East Water Reclamation Facility. These projects are all CSO initiatives.

  • March 1, 1995

    Regional Water Resource Agency established as joint City/County agency, succeeding the Owensboro Sewer Commission. This established a regional entity to provide wastewater services. All Owensboro Sewer Commission assets were absorbed by RWRA.

  • 1995-present

    RWRA has established a ongoing program to reline sewers with CuredIn-Place-Pipe (CIPP) technology for numerous deteriorated sewers. This project is a CSO initiative.

  • 1996

    Based on the recommendations of MAC, the City of Owensboro elected officials voted 5-0 to establish RWRA as City/County stormwater utility; County elected officials voted 2-2 to establish RWRA as City/County stormwater utility; City/County stormwater utility not established due to lack of affirmative vote by both City and County. Enabling Ordinances amended to allow the creation of a stormwater utility in the respective jurisdictions of each governmental entity at a later date.

  • 1996-97

    Major renovation of East Water Reclamation Facility. This project is a CSO initiative.

  • Mid to Late 1990’s

    EPA enacted the Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Policy which required communities to submit CSO annual reports with which RWRA has complied since requirement was implemented.

  • 1997

    Construction of Joseph A. Murphy Operations Building.

  • July 1997

    Extended sewer service to Highway 54 corridor; established and began charging System Development and Capacity Fees to customers. The System Development charges were associated with capital improvements for new areas; the Capacity charges applied to all new customers after July 1997.

  • 1997-present

    Provided system development expansion into the Highway 60 West, Highway 60 East, and Yellow Creek corridors. This expansion, along with the Highway 54 corridor expansion, eliminated 24 package treatment plants, along with the acquisition of the customers that discharged to these facilities.

  • 1998-present

    Began a systematic program of extension of sewer services to various subdivisions/areas outside of the existing service area within the established 201 Planning Area Boundary. Many of these extensions allowed for expansion into surrounding adjacent areas. These included in chronological order the following: 1) Sorgho Elementary, Whispering Meadows/Gardenside Subdivisions; 2) Community Development Block Grant 1 (CDBG#1) – Reynolds/Greenbriar/Thruston Heights and Andy Thoma Subdivisions; 3) Brownwood Manor; 4) Eagle Crest/Hayden Park; 5) Community Development Block Grant 2 (CDBG#2) – Glenn Court, Maple Heights, Brown Addition and Westerfield Drive subdivisions/areas; 6) Thruston area; 7) Woodland Ridge; 8) Glennview Subdivision (Coal Severance Grant); 9) Stoneybrook Subdivision; 10) Broadacre (Coal Severance); 11) Riverside/Coast Guard Lane/Highlands (Coal Severance Grant); 12) North KY Hwy 81 (Coal Severance); and 13) Vincent Station Road. These expansion efforts since the formation of RWRA, along with system growth, have added approximately 5,000 customers.

  • 1999-2000

    Major renovation of West Water Reclamation Facility (Max Rhoads Treatment Plant), Locust Street Lift Station and Dublin Lane Lift Station. This project is a CSO initiative.

  • 2005

    RWRA partnered with the City of Owensboro to construct a major separation chamber located at First and Locust Streets to separate stormwater drainage in the area and to improve flow/drainage characteristics within the ravine sewer watershed. This project is a CSO initiative.

  • 2005

    RWRA partnered with the Green River District Health Department to construct a detention basin behind the health department facility on Breckenridge Street. This project significantly reduced flooding in the area, along with providing for a reduction in CSO discharges. This project is a CSO initiative.

  • 2006-2008

    Upgrade of Center Street Lift Station. This improvement significantly increased the amount of combined sewage that could be conveyed to the Max Rhoads Plant for treatment during rain events. This project is a CSO initiative.

  • 2006-2008

    Construction of Center Street Force Main in partnership with Owensboro Grain from the Owensboro Grain facility near Center Street to the Max Rhoads Treatment Plant. Total project cost approximately $7 million, with a contribution from Owensboro Grain of over $4.2 million. This project is a CSO initiative.

  • 2007-2008

    Partnered with Owensboro Municipal Utilities and City of Owensboro to improve drainage and reduce stormwater conveyed to combined system through project adjacent to Daviess County Middle School/OMU Water Plant. This project is a CSO initiative.

  • 2007-2008

    Partnered with City of Owensboro on combined sewer separation projects (e.g., Harsh Ditch drainage improvement project and Goetz Ditch drainage improvement project). These projects are CSO initiatives.

  • September 2, 2008

    Submittal of Framework Document outlining RWRA’s general presumptive approach to address CSO improvements for the community to the Cabinet and EPA.

  • 2008-2009

    RWRA approved a partnership with City of Owensboro for various CSO improvements (e.g., Veteran’s Boulevard Combined Sewer Reconstruction @ Riverwall, Scherm Ditch detention basis and Devins Ditch detention basin) to contribute $836,000 toward these improvements. These projects are CSO initiatives.

  • 2010-present

    RWRA is working with the City of Owensboro to design additional CSO/drainage improvements in the north Harsh Ditch Watershed and if approved, move forward with the capital construction necessary to accomplish these improvements.

  • 2014

    RWRA and the City of Owensboro began the construction of a stormwater/wastewater separation project in the Harsh Ditch Fairgrounds Area located in the southern portion of the eastern tunnel sewer system. This project is designed to remove approximately 98 acres of stormwater introduction into the combined system and also to ultimately remove a significant number (450+ ERUs) of properties that discharge wastewater flow into the combined sewer system as well. This project is consistent with RWRA’s approach to remove mass of pollutants consistent with the CSO Policy.

  • 2015

    RWRA began the Masonville Sewer Extension Project to provide sewer service to 216 homes that are currently served by a failing package plant and failing septic systems. This is a CSO initiative.

  • 2016

    RWRA began the Hayden Road project to provide sewer service to 129 homes that are currently served by failing septic systems. This is a CSO initiative.

  • 2016

    RWRA began the design of UV disinfection system at both the Max Rhoads Water Reclamation Facility and the David Hawes Water Reclamation Facility. The UV disinfection method replaces the current chlorine disinfection system.

  • 2016

    RWRA began the construction of the UV disinfection system at the Max Rhoads Water Reclamation Facility.

  • 2017

    RWRA was appointed receiver by the Franklin Circuit Court of two local failing wastewater package plants. These two plants, Cedar Hills (125 homes) and Friendly Park (94 homes), will be operated and maintained by RWRA during the design and construction phase of the trunk lines to each location. Once the trunk lines are constructed, the two package plants will be decommissioned and residents currently served by these two plants will become customers of RWRA.