Mni Wiconi Rural Water System

Mni Wiconi Rural Water System

Morrison-Maierle assisted the Oglala Sioux Tribe by providing planning, design, and construction phase services on the Mni Wiconi Rural Water System since its inception in the late 1980s. Upon completion in 2015, this project now serves 50,000 people in an area covering 12,500 square miles; it is the largest rural water system in the United States.

Water supply includes groundwater from well supplies throughout the Pine Ridge Reservation and the Missouri River as a treated surface water source. Beyond the water supplies, there is an extensive distribution network consisting of pipeline, reservoirs, and pump stations.

Pipelines range in size from 26-inch transmission mains to 4 and 6-inch distribution mains consisting mainly of welded steel and PVC pipe. Total length of installed pipe is approximately 350 miles with another 240 miles of service line piping. There are 29 storage reservoirs in the system ranging in size from 75,000 gallons to 1.25M gallons, with a single 12,000-gallon tank.

These reservoirs include three buried, concrete tanks with the remaining being elevated, welded-steel tanks, and ground surface, bolted-steel tanks. Ground storage tanks consist are epoxy- coated and glass-lined tanks as well those of stainless steel construction.

A 35-year undertaking, this project used all of Morrison-Maierle’s capabilities as an engineering firm. Several areas of development were:

  • Water Facility Planning
  • Capital Improvement Planning
  • Hydraulic Computer Modeling
  • Distribution System Design
  • Storage Tank Design
  • Water Supply & Treatment Design
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