As Dayton grew in population, so did the need for more water. Before 1965, Dayton got its water from Richland Creek. A reservoir, located near the base of Laurel Snows Falls in what is now known as the Pocket Wilderness area off Back Valley Road, collected water was then piped to a small pumping station on Sentinel Heights. By 1965, concerns for a greater water demand and a safer treatment process were rising. In 1965, Dayton built a 2.0 million gallon per day (MGD) water treatment plant on Armstrong Ferry Road and moved its source of water from Richland Creek to the abundant supply of the Tennessee River.
But, as the demand for good, clean drinking water continued to stretch beyond the city limits of Dayton, it became apparent the City would need to expand once again. Dayton's water treatment plant was increased in 1988 to a 4.0 MGD capacity. The City also added a 2.0 MG tank off Blythes Ferry Road.
The City of Dayton’s new 6.0 million gallons a day (MGD) water treatment plant began production
on January 30, 2015. The new construction began in April 2013 and included upgrading the river pumps, installation of a 16-inch raw water transmission line, chemical building, flocculation and sedimentation basins, Pall Corporation membrane filters, 600,000 gallon clearwell and hi-service pumps, and installation of a 16-inch finished water transmission line from the water plant to the 2.0 MG tank on Blythes Ferry Road. The new facilities were built on site next to the existing 4.0 MGD plant on Armstrong Ferry Road. The project was completed by W & O Construction Company in 2015. Also, in 2014, we increased our total storage capacity to more than 500,000 gallons for the mountain communities with the addition of a 200,000 gallon elevated water tank. The new tank was built by Caldwell Tanks next to the existing 100,000 gallon tank near Morgan Springs Road. It went online in December 2014.
Today, we are averaging more than 2.6 MGD. We serve water to over 8,875 customers which represents a population of 23,000 persons in Rhea and Bledsoe counties (see Water Service Area Map).
The City of Dayton Water Treatment Membrane Filter Plant is classified as a Grade IV water treatment facility and is required to have at least one Grade IV operator on staff. The water plant currently has 4 full-time employees with over 57 years’ experience on staff. Grade IV is the highest grade achievable.
Also, the Dayton Water System has 2 certified distribution operators with Grade II classification. This license is required for maintenance and repairs of pipes, collection of water samples, etc. Grade II is the highest distribution grade achievable.