Permanent Water Treatment Facility

Water Treatment Location MapIn late August, the City of Woodbury purchased a parcel of land south of Hargis Parkway and east of Radio Drive for future construction of a permanent water treatment facility.

The facility is needed to treat the city’s water for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). The 3M Company made PFAS at its Cottage Grove facility from the late 1940s until 2002. PFAS wastes were disposed of at multiple sites in Washington County. The source of the PFAS in Woodbury’s groundwater has been identified as these disposal sites.

The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has established health standards for specific PFAS parameters and has issued health risk advisories on seven of Woodbury’s 19 wells since 2017.

The city removed all seven of these wells from service, and constructed a temporary water treatment facility near the intersection of Valley Creek Road and Tower Drive that brought four of these wells back into service in summer 2020. This temporary facility will help bridge the water production gap until the long-term permanent water treatment facility is operational.

The water delivered to customers continues to meet all state and federal water quality standards and guidelines for PFAS.

Costs associated with the purchase of the property are fully funded by the State of Minnesota and 3M settlement agreement. Total costs for the facility construction are in development. For several years, the city has been advocating for the majority of costs associated with treatment for PFAS to be funded through the settlement agreement. Updates on costs and treatment technologies will be forthcoming.

The location was selected for several reasons, including:

  • the need for PFAS treatment in Woodbury;
  • availability and development of land in the community;
  • need for adequate space for treatment now and in the future;
  • efficiencies of a centralized facility for operations and cost; and
  • proximity to the south well field and anticipated additional future wells.

Careful and thoughtful design work will take place over the next few years with facility construction anticipated to begin around 2023 or 2024.