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Public tours resume at the West Point Treatment Plant this summer

Summary

King County is once again hosting free public tours at the West Point Treatment plant this summer. Register online for a Saturday tour or drop in to an evening open house the fourth Tuesday of each month.

Story

King County will once again open the doors of its West Point Treatment Plant to the public this summer.

People who are curious about water systems and want to learn more about the inner workings of the plant can participate in monthly Saturday tours, or informal drop-in sessions held on the fourth Tuesday of the month. The next Saturday tour is set for June 23 from 10 a.m. to noon, which will be followed by a Tuesday evening drop-in that will also include a plant tour on June 26 from 4 to 6:30 p.m. The West Point Treatment Plant is located at 1400 Discovery Park Boulevard in Seattle’s Magnolia neighborhood.

Tour participants must be at least nine-years-old, but people of all ages are welcome to stop by and see the Burke Museum’s fascinating exhibit on West Point’s archaeology, which includes details on the lives of Native Americans who lived there nearly 4,000 years ago. And of course people will be able to meet the employees who help make clean water a regional reality every single day.

This is the first time in about six years King County has offered public tours at West Point. Tours were suspended because construction projects that included a new office annex and upgrades to a 30-year-old cogeneration system made parking and public access difficult. These projects predated the plant restoration work the County completed after flooding caused widespread damage to the plant in February 2017.

Now that these improvements are completed, King County is excited to welcome the public back.

West Point is King County’s second regional treatment plant and began operating in 1966. The plant today treats stormwater and wastewater for about 700,000 people each day, mostly in Seattle and suburban neighborhoods to the north. West Point treats about 100 million gallons of wastewater daily, and up to 440 million gallons of stormwater and wastewater during heavy rains. The plant has been operating normally and meeting permit compliance since major restoration work was completed in May 2017.

Information about these free tours, including how to sign up, is available online.