Austin Water is unveiling an innovative blackwater system
Austin Water is unveiling an innovative blackwater system designed to set a course for the future of water management for new development in Austin. Located at the City of Austin’s Permitting and Development Center and known as OSCAR and CLARA, the project has completed commissioning and will be used to demonstrate sustainable water reuse for commercial buildings and help extend Austin’s current water supply.
“Together, OSCAR and CLARA are aiming to help the City of Austin to save over one million gallons of drinking water each year, reducing the site’s potable water use by up to 75%, said Interim Director Robert Goode. “As the City of Austin continues to grow, OSCAR and CLARA will serve as models for other new buildings in the City that can capture and reuse water onsite.”
“OSCAR and CLARA are great examples of on-site water reuse strategies identified in in Austin’s Water Forward Plan,” said Kevin Critendon, Assistant Director of Environmental, Planning and Development Services for Austin Water. “Launching this pilot project is an important step in demonstrating how commercial development in Austin can help contribute to a sustainable water future in the face of future growth and climate change.”
In the lawn area next to the conference center is an underground On-site Collection and Reuse System , or OSCAR . OSCAR can collect 40,000 gallons of rainwater and air-conditioning condensate that is filtered and then stored in tanks to reuse for outdoor landscaping. This system not only conserves our potable water, but also saves energy by eliminating the treatment process used to produce drinking water.
Hidden beneath the pedestrian walkway from E. Highland Mall Blvd. you’ll find CLARA , a Closed-loop Advanced Reclaimed Assembly. CLARA can collect up to 5,000 gallons per day of wastewater from the building’s sewers, treat it using advanced membrane technology, and then recycle the clean water back to the building to flush toilets and urinals. This water can be used repeatedly for this purpose.
The project was developed through a partnership between Austin Water and the City of Austin’s Development Services and Watershed Protection Departments.
Austin Water invites the media to join staff and special guests for a ceremony to celebrate the recent commissioning of the new on-site blackwater reuse system. Staff will be on hand after opening remarks to answer questions and discuss the benefits of the new system.
When : Wednesday, June 8 at 10:00 a.m.
Where : City of Austin Permitting and Development Center, Room 1405
6310 Wilhemina Delco Drive, Austin, TX 78752
Free parking is available in the adjacent garage.
For more information about on-site reuse and OSCAR and CLARA, please visit, On-site Blackwater Reuse Pilot Project: Meet OSCAR and CLARA | AustinTexas.gov.