Denver Water's Water Use
- Denver Water uses about 250,000 acre-feet of water a year, which is less than 2 percent of all water, treated and untreated, in Colorado. An acre-foot equals 325,851 gallons of water and is enough for about 2 ½ households for one year.
- The average person in Denver Water’s service area uses 85 gallons of water each day.
Total retail treated water use by category:
- 48 percent single-family homes
- 23 percent business and industry
- 19 percent multifamily homes
- 4 percent public agencies
- 6 percent irrigation-only
Average single-family residential customer’s water usage:
- 50 percent outdoor use
- 12 percent toilet
- 11 percent shower
- 9 percent clothes washer
- 8 percent faucet
- 5 percent leaks
- 3 percent other
- 1 percent bath
- 1 percent dishwasher
The Denver Water Mission
Denver Water will be a responsible steward of the resources, assets and natural environments entrusted to us in order to provide a high-quality water supply, a resilient and reliable system, and excellent customer service.
- A five-member Board of Water Commissioners is appointed by the Mayor of Denver to staggered six-year terms.
- The Board appoints a Manager who is chief executive officer of day-to-day operations; the Manager also serves as Secretary to the Board.
- Denver Water ensures a continuous supply of water to the City and County of Denver and nearly 50 percent of Denver Water customers who live in the surrounding suburbs (water service contracts).
- It is responsible for the collection, storage, quality control and distribution of drinking water to nearly one-fourth of all Coloradans.
- Its primary water sources include: South Platte River, Blue River, Williams Fork River and Fraser River watersheds.
- Other water sources include: South Boulder Creek, Ralston Creek and Bear Creek watersheds.
- Denver Water was established in 1918 after Denver residents voted to buy the water system from a private company.
- Denver Water is Colorado's oldest and largest water utility.
- Denver Water is a separate entity from the city of Denver.
- Denver Water derives its authority from the Charter of The City and County of Denver (Article X).
Denver Water proudly serves high-quality water and promotes its efficient use to 1.3 million people in the city of Denver and many surrounding suburbs.
Denver Water serves 1,147,000* people in the Denver-metro area and approximately 175,000 people through fixed and special contracts.
- Customer accounts served in City and County of Denver: 188,786*.
- Suburban customer accounts served (resale): 76,085*.
- Suburban customer accounts served (retail): 82,868*.
- Provides service to 19,670* fire hydrants.
* Numbers based on 2012 annual report.
Water Rates and Fees
- Rates are set by Denver’s Board of Water Commissioners.
- Since its inception, the Board has set rates at a level sufficient to service its debt and to meet its expenses of operation and maintenance.
- The Board has never required ad valorem taxes to meet its obligations.
- The city’s charter requires the Board to charge more to customers who live outside the City and County of Denver.
- Denver Water operates from the Water Works Fund, which ensures the separation between city hall and Denver Water. The general city government has no access to the Water Works Fund and Denver Water has no access to the city's general fund. Both funds, however, are accounted for by the city’s auditor.
- It generates revenue from the sale of water to Denver and suburban customers and from the sale of hydropower to electric utility companies.
- Denver Water’s total operating revenues for 2012: $283 million.
- Miles of water mains (pipelines): more than 3,000.
- Miles of nonpotable pipes in system: 45.
- Number of pumping stations: 18 potable, three recycled and two raw water.
- Underground reservoirs in various city locations: 30.
See Collection System.
Water Treatment Plants
- The treatment plants use "conventional" process design consisting of coagulation/sedimentation, filtration and disinfection processes
- Denver Water’s treated water meets or exceeds all the standards set by the state of Colorado and the federal Safe Drinking Water Act.
Treatment Plant Capacity
- Marston: 250 million gallons per day.
- Moffat: 185 million gallons per day.
- Foothills: 280 million gallons per day.
Recycled Water Treatment Plant
- Recycled water is used for industrial purposes and for outdoor irrigation in parks, golf courses and other public spaces.
- Treatment at the Recycle Plant incorporates biologically aerated filtration: coagulation, sedimentation, filtration and disinfection, to produce water that meets State regulatory requirements.
- Recycling water enables Denver Water to use more of the water in its reservoirs to provide drinking water to Denver-area residents.