Wastewater Plant Unlocks Economic Opportunity in Oxford, ME

The Town of Oxford, Maine has been undergoing an extended period of growth and development; but did not have centralized wastewater collection, treatment, and disposal facilities to accommodate the recent rise in economic activity. To meet its goals, the Town hired Woodard & Curran to design and construct a new wastewater treatment facility (WWTF) and a sanitary collection system to serve its users. The facility had to be built in a small, yet highly developed area of Town with less than ideal soil conditions. Through the use of out-of-the-ordinary technology and ingenuity in the pre-selection and design process, Woodard & Curran was able to deliver a long-term, cost-effective solution to Oxford’s sanitary wastewater needs.


Due to limited land area, a variable user base, and advanced effluent limits to be met, a Membrane Bioreactor (MBR) treatment process was used for Oxford’s facility. The MBR treatment process is a part of the facility’s biological treatment process and it uses microfiltration to separate solids within the biological reactor. This is the first MBR treatment process employed at a municipal treatment facility in the history of the state of Maine.


Oxford knew that in order to make the project work, it needed a package of funding that would reduce the burden on residents and be sustainable without imposing exorbitant rates. Woodard & Curran helped the Town obtain funding for the $28 million project through USDA Rural Development, which included a 45% grant package. Thanks to this solution, user rates for this brand new system are consistent with those in neighboring communities.


A pre-procurement process and evaluated bid were used to select the treatment system manufacturer for the Oxford WWTF to make sure the town received the best MBR system for the long term. The process involved a weighted points scoring evaluation of upfront capital cost, lifecycle costs, equipment warranty, system operability, technical support, and experience/qualifications.

Town of Oxford

Oxford, ME



Brent Bridges, Robert Polys

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