San Diego officials say a vacant 17-acre site in eastern Mission Valley is where they plan to build a large purification plant needed for phase two of the Pure Water sewage recycling system.
Construction of phase one, which includes a purification plant in western Miramar, began last year and is scheduled for completion in 2025.
The goal of the multibillion-dollar Pure Water system is to boost San Diego’s water independence by creating a local source and making the city and region less reliant on imported water.
City officials said the Mission Valley site was chosen for the phase two purification plant because it is vacant land owned by the city’s Public Utilities Department, and because an alternate city site considered in Liberty Station is too small.
The Mission Valley site is just north of Interstate 8, just east of Mission City Parkway and just south of IKEA and San Diego State’s new Mission Valley campus.
SDSU plans to build a large river park just north of the new Pure Water site. University officials say they plan to break ground on the river park later this year and complete the project in 2023.
San Diego’s $4 billion plan to boost the city’s water independence is facing delays and cost increases thanks to a legal dispute over the use of unionized construction workers.
A judge issued an injunction in June that halted the project, a recycling system called “Pure Water” that would purify treated sewage into drinking water and supply one-third of the city’s water supply by 2035.
The injunction, which San Diego officials estimate is costing them $4 million a month, was prompted by a city compromise that requires union workers on some Pure Water projects and allows union and non-union workers on others.
The San Diego chapter of the Associated General Contractors, a coalition of contractors, contends the city’s compromise favors union workers. It filed suit in May claiming the compromise violates a successful 2012 city ballot measure that regulates the use of union workers on projects.
Superior Court Judge John Meyer agreed, issuing a preliminary injunction that forced city officials to halt soliciting bids for Pure Water projects and to begin exploring their legal options.