An edition of: WaterAtlas.orgPresented By: Sarasota County, USF Water Institute

Water-Related News

Sarasota County makes progress on Bee Ridge water plant

Changes at the plant are expected to reduce nutrient pollution in surface waters

Sarasota County has begun construction on a project that will dramatically upgrade a faulty wastewater treatment plant east of Interstate 75, blamed for spilling millions of gallons of polluted water and potentially contributing to area water quality problems for years.

The project will upgrade the 12-million-gallon-per-day Bee Ridge Water Treatment facility on Lorraine Road to an 18-million-gallon advanced treatment facility.

The transformation, which has already increased wastewater fees for customers in unincorporated Sarasota County, would significantly reduce nitrogen and phosphorus in treated water — two key pollutants that can fuel harmful algae growth in waterways.

The project is estimated to cost $157 million and is expected to be completed at the end of 2025.

Rolled into the project are several other improvements, including drilling two aquifer recharge wells, which replace groundwater being consumed and helps with reducing saltwater intrusion into the aquifer.