Main Street Wastewater Treatment Plant
The Main Street Wastewater Treatment Plant is an 18-acre sewage treatment facility operated by the Emerald Coast Utilities Authority.
The Main Street plant was one of two constructed between 1935 and 1937; the other one was located on 9th Avenue at Intendencia Street. The sites were chosen for their low elevation, a requirement of the era's gravity-powered sewer system. Both plants provided only "primary treatment" — that is, separating solids from liquids — before depositing the waste into Pensacola Bay. This remained the case even after a major expansion in the 1950s.
The 9th Avenue plant, the source of many complaints by visitors to the nearby Admiral Mason Park, was shut down in the in the mid-60s, replaced with a force main to redirect sewage to the newly-expanded Main Street plant. It was formally dedicated the Central Sewage Treatment Plant by the City of Pensacola in 1968.
After sustaining serious damage from a 15-foot storm surge during Hurricane Ivan in September 2004, the resulting three-day outage energized discussions to move the plant. The estimated $300 million cost of such a move (ameliorated by a $134 million grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency) has caused a great deal of controversy, and the plant was often cited in the debate over the Community Maritime Park.
The plant was taken offline on April 28, 2011; demolition commenced in September of that year. A 330-acre site off Chemstrand Road in Cantonment, formerly owned by Solutia, was chosen as the new site of the plant.
- "History of the plant." Pensacola News Journal, January 18, 2000.
- Main Street Replacement Project