Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Our Drinking Water: Some of the Best in the Land

The Hetch Hetchy Regional Water System, operated by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC), provides its 2.6 million customers with some of the highest-quality water in the country.  

It originates as pristine snowmelt and precipitation from the protected Tuolumne Watershed in the Yosemite National Park wilderness, and flows into Hetch Hetchy Reservoir’s granite basin for storage. 

In fact, waters collected here so consistently meet and exceed Federal and State standards for safe drinking water that no filtration is required. (The SFPUC is one of the few water utility districts in the country to be granted this exemption.)

Hetch Hetchy water makes up about 85% of your tap water, with the rest coming from Bay Area reservoirs that capture and store rainfall and runoff from the SFPUC’s Alameda and Peninsula watersheds. Both watersheds are carefully managed to preserve both the quality of the waters and the variety of natural habitats that support an abundance of native plant and animal life.

Local reservoir water is treated by one of two state-of-the-art treatment plants. On the Peninsula, it’s the newly upgraded Harry Tracy Water Treatment Plant where waters from the Peninsula Watershed’s  Lower Crystal Springs, Upper Crystal Springs, and San Andreas reservoirs are pumped in for disinfection, filtering and post-treatment before delivery to about 1 million customers.  More on those treatment steps in an upcoming blog.   

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Regional Groundwater Storage & Recovery Project to Begin Drilling in South San Francisco

Beginning as early as Wednesday, July 15, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission’s Regional Groundwater Storage and Recovery (GSR) project will begin drilling a new groundwater well to a depth of 620 feet deep at Garden Chapel Funeral Home in South San Francisco.

24-hour well drilling work will occur continuously for up to one month inside the blue rectangle pictured above. 

To minimize noise impacts, the contractor will monitor noise levels and install sound blankets to ensure it does not exceed the local noise ordinance. During night work, the contractor will rotate construction lighting to direct it away from homes near well drilling work. 

For more information about this project, please call the 24-hour answering service at 866-973-1476, or visit the Project webpage at 

Friday, July 10, 2015

Neighbors Toured Newly Completed Harry Tracy Water Treatment Plant Upgrades

What better way to meet your neighbors than over coffee, bagels, and water treatment? On the last Saturday in June, more than 50 of our neighbors around the newly-upgraded Harry Tracy Water Treatment Plant accepted our invitation to do just that. The Plant has been under construction for the past four years in order to complete critical seismic and system upgrades as well as build an 11-million-gallon treated water reservoir on the site. It was our chance to show our patient neighbors what the fuss was about, and to say thank you.

Neighbors enjoy the view from the top of the newly completed Treated Water Reservoir.

The Plant treats drinking water that is stored in the Crystal Springs and San Andreas Reservoirs on the Peninsula before delivering it to communities in San Mateo and San Francisco counties. The upgraded Plant can now provide up to 140 million gallons of water per day for 60 days within 24 hours after a major earthquake to the almost 1 million people that it serves.

Project Construction Manger Ryan Cayabyab, Project Manager Calvin Huey, and plant operators Tim Kennedy and Jim Myint showed our guests around the plant. They explained how water is treated at the plant, and highlighted the new features recently installed as part of construction. Check out this time lapse to get a sense of the scale of the project.

The completion of the project is a huge milestone for the Water System Improvement Program (WSIP) and a critical component of a consistent, reliable and high-quality drinking water supply in the Bay Area.

We enjoyed meeting our delightful neighbors, and we look forward to seeing you all around the neighborhood.

A map of the upgrades completed during the Harry Tracy Water Treatment Plant Long-Term Improvements Project.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

New Interactive Map for Regional Groundwater Storage & Recovery Project

The Regional Groundwater Storage & Recovery (GSR) Project has multiple active sites across five cities: Daly City, South San Francisco, Millbrae, Colma and San Bruno. In an effort to keep you informed about construction activities, detours and other project updates associated with GSR Project’s 13 sites, we have developed a Geographic Information System (GIS) Map.

This GIS map will be located on the project webpage The map will be updated regularly depending on construction activities. A a snapshot of the GIS map with functionality capabilities is below.

  • Click numbers 1 - 13 to review construction site information
  • Each site has a box that highlights current status, hours and upcoming work
  • The blue area illustrates the construction area limits associated with the site
  • Use the navigational + and - sign to zoom in and out of the GSR project map