New Operations Centers Promise Efficiency, Cost Savings

To stay ahead of San Antonio’s remarkable growth, SAWS has been working on major upgrades to its operations centers — to make sure the workers who keep your faucets and sewers running can keep their daily duties flowing just as smoothly.

SAWS operations centers are the hubs for all the activities that keep our water and sewer services going. These centers, spread across the city, are where maintenance crews are dispatched, materials are stored and vehicles are maintained.

Construction is underway on new buildings and improvements at two existing operations centers. It’s the second phase of a multiyear program to expand and modernize SAWS field operations sites citywide.

The East Side Operations Center on Houston Street is SAWS’ largest. Originally built as a trucking company and supply warehouse, the site was acquired by the City Water Board in the early 1990s. The Northwest Operations Center on Wurzbach Road was built in 1973 on what was then the far edge of San Antonio’s suburbs. While both facilities served the utility well, the aging structures had become inefficient and costly to maintain.

The project is using pre-engineered metal buildings as a lower-cost alternative to traditional construction. The new structures are also being built to meet LEED Silver equivalency standards, to save both water and energy.

In addition, the buildings are using the same materials and finishes as SAWS’ other operations centers, to keep maintenance costs more affordable.

The project also aims to eliminate congestion at existing service center sites and reduce drive times for SAWS crews, resulting in faster response to emergencies.

The $19.25 million project is scheduled for completion by July 2020.