Capital Improvement Program

Capital Improvement Program Overview

To effectively respond to the needs of the recycled water system, West Basin administers a Capital Improvement Program (CIP) that focus on the installation of new infrastructure and equipment, or the restoration of existing assets. A comprehensive recycled water Capital Implementation Master Plan (CIMP) is used as a guide to best meet long-term planning and reliability objectives. In general, the West Basin’s CIP Projects seek to support the following:

  • The addition of future customers,
  • Safeguarding recycled water system capacity and reliability,
  • Preserving water quality obligations,
  • Responding to changing regulatory requirements

New Infrastructure

New infrastructure and equipment are added to the recycled water system for reasons that may include the following:

  • Increasing customer connections through distribution system expansions and customer lateral construction.
  • Increasing system capacity through expansion of existing treatment systems or inclusion of new treatment systems.
  • Addressing water quality or regulatory requirements with new treatment technologies, unit processes, or equipment.

Repair & Rehabilitation Program

With an aging infrastructure, the repair and replacement of existing equipment and systems is key for long term achievement of quality and capacity goals. For this reason, West Basin’s capital improvement program includes an R&R component intended to extend the useful life of existing facilities and equipment.

Project Implementation


Feasibility Studies – Feasibility studies are undertaken in order to assess the practicality of the proposed project. In general, these studies will assess five areas of feasibility; technical feasibility, economic feasibility, legal feasibility, operational feasibility, and schedule feasibility.


Once a project has been identified as feasible, it may move into the design phase. The designers will define the project through detailed specification documents and construction drawings. The final deliverable from the design phase is the Ready-To-Advertise bid package. This package is a complete design (design analysis, specifications, and drawings,) including annotated design submittal review comments that answer and/or incorporate review comments resulting from the review of the final design submittal.


The majority of West Basin’s construction projects are considered Public Works Construction Projects. Public works in general means:

  • Construction, alteration, demolition, installation, or repair work done under contract and paid in whole or in part out of public funds.
  • It can include preconstruction and post-construction activities related to a public works project.
  • For a full definition of public works refer to Labor Code section 1720.

Anyone working on a public works project must be paid prevailing wages as determined by DIR. Projects of $30,000 or more must meet DIR’s apprenticeship requirements. Failure to comply with public works requirements can result in civil penalties, criminal prosecution, or both.

Types of Projects

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Recycled Water Pipelines & Laterals

New pipeline alignments and customer laterals are necessary to expand the system.

Treatment Plant Expansions

Within each of West Basin’s treatment facilities, there are more than 30 discreet treatment systems dedicated to producing West Basin’s five designer waters. Treatment plant expansions range from the addition of new unit process for redundancy or reliability, or a wholesale facility expansion intended to increase the treatment capacity of the system.

Repair and Rehabilitation of Existing Facilities

Because West Basin has a substantial range of assets of varying ages, repair and rehabilitation projects are a critical part of ensuring the health and longevity of West Basin’s infrastructure. These types of projects can include, but are not limited to simple replacement or repair for equipment such as pipes, pumps, tanks, instrumentation, or treatment process elements.

The District’s existing infrastructure requires repair and maintenance on a regular basis. Repair or refurbishment expenses to the existing capital assets under certain circumstances may be capitalized. The criteria for determining whether the expenditure is an expense or capital asset requires knowledge of the effect the repair will have on the capital asset. To be considered as a capital asset, these conditions must be met:

  • Total repair or refurbishment cost of one job has to be $10,000 or more, and;
  • After the repair or refurbishment, the remaining useful life of the existing asset must be extended by at least Three years.

When the above conditions are not met, the cost of repair or refurbishment will be considered as operations and maintenance expenses.

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