Blower Air Cleanup System

Los Angeles’ Tillman Water Reclamation Plant Project Earns Envision Silver


WASHINGTON, D.C. – April 24, 2018 – The Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI) has recognized the City of Los Angeles’ Environmental Engineering Division (EED) for their $5.9 million Blower Air Cleanup System Project at the Donald C. Tillman Water Reclamation Plant (DCTWRP) with its Envision® Silver Award for sustainable infrastructure.

DCTWRP is one of four major water reclamation plants supporting the Los Angeles Clean Water Program, which produces up to 125 million gallons of reclaimed water per day, harvests energy from biogas, and creates biosolids for beneficial reuse. The program’s recycled water replaces potable water for groundwater recharge, and industrial, landscape and recreational purposes.

Envision is a collaboration between ISI and the Zofnass Program for Sustainable Infrastructure at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Envision rates the impact of sustainable infrastructure projects across the full range of environmental, social and economic impacts. Award-winning Envision projects have positive and sustainable social, economic, and environmental impacts on a community.

As part of its 2007 nitrogen removal program for DCTWRP, EED completed installation of new process blowers and converted the aeration basins to include anoxic zones, convertible anoxic/aerobic “swing” zones, and aerobic zones. The new blowers used in this process extract foul air from the primary tanks and headworks building and convey this air to the newly configured aeration basins. The foul air contains corrosive hydrogen sulfide gas, particulate matter, dust, mists, and other substances which if left untreated, would cause premature erosion and degradation of the blowers, downstream piping, diffusers and ancillary equipment.

Thus, EED decided to install a biotrickling filter system to treat the in-process foul air. After evaluation of alternative air treatments, the biotrickling filter system was selected because it does not require chemical usage, thereby reducing costs, ensuring a safer working environment for plant operators, reducing environment risk, and minimizing waste. In addition, the biotrickling system reduces the longterm operations and maintenance costs by as much as $1.4 million over the life of the system.

EED collaborated with CH2M (now Jacobs) on the Envision Award submission as part of its ongoing efforts to have ISI provide third-party verification for its sustainable infrastructure improvements. This project developed and piloted a new approach to Jacob’s award-winning Resiliency and Sustainability Framework to streamline project verification, and organization-wide implementation of Envision at the Bureau of Engineering.


Additional sustainability achievements of the EED Project include:


  • Training, mentorship, and career development for staff, including a program for recruiting students from local colleges and universities.
  • Requirements to ensure small businesses, and minority-, women-, and disabled veteran-owned businesses are included in the bidding process.
  • Ensuring at least 30% of project hours were worked by local residents, 10% by disadvantaged workers, and 20% by apprentices.
  • Requiring a comprehensive waste management plan for construction and demolition debris that requires diversion of 75% of inert debris from landfills.
  • 65.3% of project materials anticipated to be available for recycling/reuse at the project’s useful life.
  • Tracking to ensure all salvageable assets and materials are sourced first before newly fabricated parts are purchased – Los Angeles Sanitation Department Enterprise Maintenance, Planning and Control program has $14 million in replacement parts and equipment.
  • Long-term water scarcity/shortage risks from climate change are addressed by eliminating use of potable water – 100% of water required for operations are drawn from non-potable wastewater treatment process water, circulating it back through the system for purification and discharge.

“Operations and maintenance upgrades to municipal assets doesn’t often make front page news. But the City of Los Angeles’s EED has demonstrated that smaller-scale projects can integrate sustainable design alternatives and support local sustainability and resiliency priorities in a cost-effective manner,” said ISI President and CEO, John Stanton.

Blower Air Clean Up System-VFDs for Recirc Pump


City of Los Angeles, Bureau of Engineering, Environmental Engineering Division:
Michael Sarullo, Environmental Engineering Division Engineer; (310) 648-6120;

Brian Morandi, Corporate Communications; (720) 286-0719; Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure: For inquires related to ISI, Envision, or the Envision verification process, please contact: John Stanton, President; (202) 218-6725;

City of Los Angeles, Bureau of Engineering, Environmental Engineering Division:
The City of Los Angeles (the City’s), at 470 square miles, has a population of approximately 4 million. Within the City’s Department of Public Works, the Bureau of Engineering (BOE) delivers stormwater, streets, bridges, buildings, wastewater, water reclamation, parks and transportation infrastructure. Within the BOE, the Environmental Engineering Division (EED) is responsible for planning and designing new capital improvement projects and upgrades at the City’s four wastewater treatment and water reclamation facilities. EED’s staff awards $75 million dollars of construction projects annually to support the Los Angeles Sanitation Department’s Clean Water Program.

About Jacobs:
Jacobs leads the global professional services sector delivering solutions for a more connected, sustainable world. With $15 billion in fiscal 2017 revenue when combined with full-year CH2M revenues and a talent force of more than 74,000, Jacobs provides a full spectrum of services including scientific, technical, professional and construction- and program-management for business, industrial, commercial, government and infrastructure sectors. For more information, visit, and connect with Jacobs on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

About ISI Envision:
Envision® is the product of a joint collaboration among ISI, which was founded by three national engineering associations: the American Society of Civil Engineers, American Council of Engineering Companies, and American Public Works Association, and the Zofnass Program for Sustainable Infrastructure at Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Information on ISI and Envision can be found on the ISI website,

Download the Project Profile announcement.