Northwater Treatment Plant

The Moffat Treatment Plant was built in 1937.The operators at Denver Water’s Moffat Treatment Plant maintain the oldest treatment facility in Denver Water’s system, and continue to produce safe, high-quality drinking water. Still, the treatment facility, built in 1937, has reached the end of its useful life and must be replaced.

New treatment plant options

Our engineering and operations teams reviewed the concept of upgrading and/or rebuilding the Moffat Treatment Plant at its current location, but qualitative and quantitative analyses found construction of a new facility near Ralston Reservoir to be the most cost-effective long-term solution.

The Moffat site will remain a Denver Water facility for treated water storage and distribution, and construction work will be required to replace the storage tanks and upgrade the distribution system. Denver Water is evaluating the site and developing alternatives for use of the Moffat site and its nearby 20th and Quail property, once the treatment plant is decommissioned.

This view of Moffat Treatment Plant's corridor was taken in 1939.


Denver Water tested various treatment technologies in 2015, and determined a conventional process similar to Denver Water's other treatment plants was the most cost-effective option. The Northwater Treatment Plant will be able to produce 150 million gallons of water per day and is expected to be the most expensive capital project in Denver Water's long-term budget, with conceptual estimates exceeding $400 million (2014 dollars). These estimates will be updated once more detailed design information is developed in 2017.

Mayor Benjamin Stapleton addresses the crowd and radio station KOA during the Moffat Treatment Plant’s opening celebration in 1937.

Estimated timeline

In March 2016, Denver Water selected Jacobs as its owner's representative to assist in delivering the project. Denver Water will select a construction manager-at-risk and specialized engineering firms in summer and fall 2016 to provide design services. (Consultants, suppliers and contractors can go online to view available business opportunities.)

Preliminary and final design of the new treatment plant is expected to be complete by 2019, with early phases of construction starting in 2018. The new treatment plant is expected to be operational no later than 2023.



Peter McCormick