In late 2007 the City of Fort Collins, Colorado, knew it had a big problem with pine tree debris clogging valves integral to the flow of water to its water treatment facilities. Pine beetles were killing many trees, sending pine needles and other debris down the Poudre River and then through an irrigation ditch and into the treatment plants. This mountain water provides a secondary water supply for the City and three area water districts.
Officials tapped Ayres Associates and general contractor Hydro Construction to brainstorm a plan. Many options were considered and rejected before the project team selected a traveling screen system commonly used in screening wastewater.
Part of the continuously rotating screen is always catching debris while the other section is always being cleaned by a high-pressure spray bar. Installed before the spring 2009 runoff season, the screen has solved the problem.