Sacramento’s EchoWater a U.S. finalist at Bentley’s ‘Going Digital’ awards

Courtesy of Project Controls Cubed LLC.

Infrastructure engineering software company Bentley Systems, Inc., has announced several projects from the United States as finalists in its 2023 Going Digital Awards in Infrastructure. Among the finalists in the water/wastewater category is the City of Sacramento’s $1.7 billion EchoWater project

The annual awards program honors the work of Bentley software users advancing infrastructure design, construction, and operations throughout the world. Twelve independent jury panels, representing 12 award categories, selected the 36 finalists from more than 300 nominations submitted by 235 organizations from 51 countries.

Representatives from the finalists’ organizations will present their projects to a panel of independent judges to determine the winners and meet with global press and industry executives at the company’s 2023 Year in Infrastructure and Going Digital Awards event, being held at the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore, Oct. 11-12, 2023. Visit the site to learn more about the finalists.

The Sacramento Regional County Sanitation District’s (Regional San) EchoWater project is a decade-long expansion of the district’s regional wastewater treatment plant near Elk Grove, California. The treatment plant is the second largest of its kind in the nation and treats an average of 135 million gallons of wastewater each day from 1.6 million people throughout Sacramento County and West Sacramento.

The project began in 2010 when new treatment requirements were issued for Regional San’s wastewater discharge permit aimed at improving water quality and alleviating ecological problems in the Delta. Regional San tested many possible treatment strategies to achieve the new permit requirements. A specific strategy was selected, engineering designs were completed, and construction began. The massive upgrade consisted of 22 individual projects that together used 41,350 tons of steel and more than 225,000 cubic yards of concrete.

The centerpiece of the upgrade was the Biological Nutrient Removal (BNR) Project—the heart of the new treatment process. BNR is a sprawling complex, roughly equivalent in size to 18 football fields, and is responsible for removing 99% of ammonia and 89% of nitrogen, addressing concerns about possible impacts downstream.

Project Controls Cubed needed to design 22 individual projects for a sprawling complex for removing the ammonia and nitrogen, presenting significant challenges. The team used Bentley’s SYNCHRO and iTwin to develop construction solutions and a digital twin. Working in a connected digital visual environment helped EchoWater deliver the project $400 million (USD) under budget.  

Regional San said the expansion project was among the largest public works projects in the Sacramento region’s history.

To view the full list of finalists, visit Winners will be announced on Oct. 12, 2023.

Click here for more on the design, construction and new features at Sacrament’s EchoWater Resource Recovery Facility.

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