After nearly three decades and $400 million later, the combined sanitary sewer system in Grand Rapids was officially separated, eliminating raw sewage into the Grand River.

The history behind this achievement was that in 1969, 12.6 billion gallons of untreated sewage flowed into the Grand River as a result of how the city’s sewer system was initially built that allowed storm water and wastewater to mix. It caused great concern to communities downriver of Grand Rapids and in 1988 the state slapped a ban on development until it solved the sewer problem.

When these overflows happen, we call them Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs), these are the main concerns:

Waste Recovery handles all types of infrastructure solutions, not just in Michigan, but many parts of this nation. If you are concerned that wastewater and stormwater are mixing, please give your local municipality a call.