Garney Water Partnership Helps Left Hand Water District Pilot First Design-Build Project

JULY 2016 — In an effort to better serve the Left Hand Water District’s (the District) 20,000 customers during summer peak demand, the 8 million gallon per day (MGD) Dodd Water Treatment Plant needed additional capacity. The District selected the Garney Water Partnership, a joint venture between Garney Construction and Burns & McDonnell, to complete the $29 million design-build plant expansion. This project marked the first alternative delivery project for the District. During the value-based selection, Garney Water Partnership was the only team that could meet the District’s aggressive schedule.


“The District was extremely concerned with keeping the project on schedule without compromising quality or rushing decisions,” said Christopher Smith, General Manager of Left Hand Water District. “Through the design-build process, we were able to move forward with pre-purchasing major systems and site excavation, while continuing to focus on the details of our new plant.”


Throughout the project, Garney worked closely with Burns & McDonnell to identify project phasing and value engineering options to meet the schedule and budget. During the design phase, Garney provided design reviews and work packages, in addition to developing the guaranteed maximum price (GMP). Construction commenced once the GMP was established but prior to final design. This approach accelerated the schedule and the start of construction. Garney was able to conduct design reviews throughout final design development, while simultaneously self-performing construction.


“By the time we had a final design, excavation was complete and Garney successfully met an extremely aggressive schedule with the new plant treating water by May 2016,” said Smith.


As a peaking plant for the District, the facility only operates during the summer when water demands increase from farmers and residents within 110 square miles throughout Boulder and Weld counties. The existing plant had to remain in operation until September 2015 and return online by late spring 2016. This limited the construction schedule to a nine month winter shutdown. The demolition and installation of the Pall membranes in the existing plant could not begin until shutdown, leaving no margin for error in coordinating work activities.


The facility, now rated at 16 MGD, is currently in operation providing water to the District’s customers while Garney completes final phases of closeout. Substantial completion was achieved ahead of schedule on May 12, 2016. The project was also completed below budget, which will allow the District to complete additional upgrades at their primary facility.


“We have no doubt that few teams could have met all of our objectives within such a compressed design and construction timeline,” said Smith.

Photo: Garney modified an existing building to house a Pall microfiltration / membrane system.