Doug Tharp, Governing Board member, leads his fellow Board members and District staff on a tour of The Villages.
During a tour in April, Governing and Basin Board members, as well as members of the Withlacoochee Regional Water Supply Authority, had an opportunity to see firsthand how The Villages is putting water conservation and reuse into practice.
The trolley tour was led by Governing Board member Doug Tharp, who resides in The Villages, and Trey Arnett of Arnett Environmental, who serves as the water resources engineer for the community. According to Arnett, 76 percent of water used in The Villages is from alternative water supplies such as reclaimed water, storm water and lower Floridan aquifer ground water.
The first stop on the tour included a visit to a golf course pump station where reclaimed water and lower Floridan aquifer ground water are used for irrigation. Board members also had a chance to see a nonpotable utility pump station where storm water and lower Floridan aquifer ground water are used for irrigation.
Other stops on the tour included a visit to a neighborhood recreation facility, featuring Florida-friendly landscaping and Empire Zoysia turf, and a wastewater treatment plant with a reclaimed water storage pond.
“As the newest Governing Board member, I was really proud to show off The Villages because I believe we are being good stewards of the water resources here,” said Doug Tharp. “I really think The Villages is setting a good example for other communities to follow when it comes to water conservation.”
The Villages by the Numbers
At build-out, The Villages is expected to:
- Feature 500 million gallons of stormwater storage
- Use 8.5 million gallons a day of reclaimed water
- Use 5 million gallons a day of storm water