Stickney Sludge Treatment Facility

The Stickney Treatment plant is the world’s largest waste water treatment facility, handling 1.2 billion gallons per day and serving 2.4 million people in a 260 square mile area including the central part of Chicago and 43 suburban communities. As part of this $160 million improvement project, McHugh constructed a new gravity thickening building, a 100,000 square foot cast-in-place and precast concrete structure that houses eight tanks-each 80 feet in diameter which will be used to thicken sludge during the wastewater treatment process. Odor control from the gravity thickening building is achieved by transferring air to a 20,000 sf cast-in-place biofilter building which will contain 112,000 cubic feet of filter media that absorbs and eliminates the odorous air passing through the 9-foot deep media beds.

The project also includes a major update to the facility’s infrastructure including:

  • The installation of approximately 43,000 lf of underground piping.  The underground piping includes process piping, sewers, city water and effluent water lines.
  • The addition of three new substations and renovation an existing substation while keeping the existing plant in service.
  • The installation of four new pump stations.  The new pump stations are in an existing process area and therefore the work must be sequenced to minimize any impact to existing plant operations.
  • Replacement of approximately 5,000 lf of above-ground piping.

A new guard house for the Stickney WR police force was also constructed.

Since the plant must remain in operation, the entire construction process has to be precisely sequenced to minimize any impact on existing plant operations.  Any interruption in service would negatively impact the City of Chicago’s sewage system.