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Downriver Wastewater Treatment Plant

The Downriver Wastewater Treatment Facility (DWTF) utilizes preliminary, primary and state of the art Ultra Violet (UV) disinfection treatment processes to treat sewage prior to discharging treated effluent to the Trenton Channel of the Detroit River. The facility is located on a 34-acre site in Wyandotte Michigan and has 80 employees. The DWTF can provide treatment for an influent flow rate of up to 225 MGD. The primary and secondary treatment processes are designed to treat maximum flow rate of 150 and 125 MGD, respectively. The facility is designed such that flow cannot bypass both primary and secondary treatment processes. All flows undergo disinfection prior to discharge to the Detroit River.

DWTF Design Flows

ProcessDesign Flow (MGD)
Minimum Flow25
Dry Weather Flow50
Average Annual Flow65
Maximum Rated Flow225
Primary Treatment Capacity150
Secondary Treatment Capacity125
Disinfection Rated Capacity225

The Downriver Sewage Disposal System (DSDS) Improvements have been completed by Wayne County. The improvements enable the DWTF to accomplish the following goals:

  • Meet the DWTF discharge limits set forth in its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit issued by the Michigan Department of Environment Quality (MDEQ); and
  • Reduce the potential for transport system overflows and back-ups under certain storm conditions.

The communities include:
  • Allen Park
  • Riverview
  • Belleville
  • Romulus
  • Brownstown Township
  • Southgate
  • Dearborn Heights
  • Taylor
  • Ecorse
  • Van Buren Township
  • Lincoln Park
  • Wyandotte
  • River Rouge

Local sewer systems in each of the 13 tributary communities deliver wastewater to the County's network of interceptor sewers for delivery to the DWTF. The County's DSDS interceptors include:

  • Riverdrive Interceptor, which transports wastewater from the communities of River Rouge, Ecorse, and Lincoln Park, and approximately 90 percent of the wastewater from Allen Park;
  • Pennsylvania Interceptor, which transports wastewater to the DWTF from eight Downriver communities including Belleville, Van Buren Township, Romulus, Taylor, Dearborn Heights, Brownstown Township, Allen Park, and those portions of Southgate served by separated sewers; and
  • Downriver Tunnel System, which provides storage and transportation of excess wastewater in the Pennsylvania Interceptor System during storm events.