Hastings wastewater treatment plant relocation

Map shows the site of the existing plant and the site of the future plant two miles southeast. The route of the new sanitary sewer to the future plant are marked in green and gold, and the route of the future outfall pipe marked in black will carry the treated wastewater to the Mississippi River.

After seven decades at its current location, the Hastings Wastewater Treatment Plant located near downtown is relocating to accommodate needed upgrades and projected growth in its service area.

“A 2020 condition assessment identified a need for major renewal at the existing facility to continue reliable service through the year 2040,” manager of wastewater plant engineering Rene Heflin said at a Jan. 5 public hearing on the plant’s relocation. 

The Metropolitan Council Environmental Services (MCES) is moving forward with its plans to build a new $145 million plant along Ravenna Trail in Hastings, intended to be commissioned by 2027.

The existing plant was constructed in 1952 by the City of Hastings and acquired by MCES in 1970. The plant’s last expansion was in 1985, bringing it to its current capacity.

Right now the plant has the capacity to treat just over 2 million gallons of wastewater a day for the 23,000 residents it serves in Hastings.

But because it’s bounded by the Mississippi River and surrounding residential areas, the plant is physically constrained and expected to exceed its existing treatment capacity by 2050, according to the facility plan.

With projected population growth in Hastings within the next few decades, the existing plant wouldn’t be able to serve the future sewered population.

The future plant intends to treat 10 million gallons of wastewater a day and serve 29,000 residents.

Existing facilities at the plant are also near the end of their service life and need to be renewed.

A 2020 condition assessment indicated $26 million in upgrades would need to be made to continue services at the existing plant. Relocation of the plant avoids this investment in upgrades.

The 221-acre site for the new plant allows for future plant expansion, with a long-term service area that includes portions of Marshan, Nininger and Vermillion townships.

The $145 million price tag includes $21 million for a lift station on the existing site and conveyance of wastewater to the new site, $121 million for the new wastewater treatment plant and outfall to the Mississippi River, and $3 million to decommission the existing plant.

Preliminary design of the future plant will take place in the next two years with construction taking place between 2024 and 2026.

It could be commissioned as soon as 2027 with decommissioning of the current plant slated for 2028.

The Met Council has a public hearing on Jan. 5 to gather input on the facility plan draft for the new plant. Next steps in the plan include adoption of the facility plan by Feb. 23 before it is submitted to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency in March for final approval.


Written By


Sophia Voight is a reporter for the Hastings Star Gazette. She is from Oshkosh, WI and graduated from the UW Oshkosh with a bachelor's degree in Multimedia Journalism in 2021. She can be reached with any news tips at svoight@orourkemediagroup.com


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