The Allegheny County Sanitary Authority and the wastewater treatment plant went into service over 60 years ago, but its gestation period began much earlier and also included a remarkable pre-history of its location.
In 1946, the Allegheny County Sanitary Authority was created under Pennsylvania’s Municipal Authorities Act to design, construct and operate an interceptor system and treatment plant for residential, commercial and industrial wastewater. Over the next decade, the 59-acre site that ALCOSAN occupies now was transformed from empty land to what then was a state-of-the-art facility.
The ALCOSAN plant has gone through a lot of changes over its lifetime. Some features remain the same on the outside. The signature blue, 300-foot incinerator chimney and the 11-story, 40-foot-diameter wet well, for example. But the plant has been and will continue to be modernized, with additional treatment capacity that removes additional waste and extensive odor control devices to comply with today’s environmental regulations and standards.
As ALCOSAN embarks on a new era of environmental responsibility, we invite you to take a fascinating look back at the Authority’s early history, inception and realization.