Valley Water celebrates five years of advanced purified water

Innovation is the heart of Silicon Valley. In that spirit of innovation, Valley Water commemorates the 5th anniversary of the Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center (purification center). Opened in July 2014, the purification center is a partnership between Valley Water and the cities of San Jose and Santa Clara to study the safety, cleanliness, and reliability of advanced water purification as a new, locally controlled, and drought-resistant water supply.

The purification center originated from Valley Water’s long term water supply strategic planning. The record-breaking droughts of the late 2000s and early 2010s reinforced the need to identify and develop new sources of water for Santa Clara County. After five years of operation, the purification center continues to show Valley Water, community partners, and the public that advanced purification is a drought-resistant, clean, safe, and reliable water supply.

Tours at the purification center help Valley Water educate the public about the benefits and advantages of potable reuse, such as using advanced purified water in drinking water supplies through groundwater recharge and enhancing non-drinkable, recycled water. The purification center tour program allows visitors to witness the proven advanced purification technology at the heart of the purification center and learn about water reuse and the county’s water supply. Tours allow residents and visitors to see the purification center in action, and they provide an interactive and dynamic learning experience that helps people understand the innovative and highly advanced processes that produce advanced purified water which are (1) microfiltration, (2) reverse osmosis, and (3) ultraviolet disinfection. Similar technology also provides safe, clean, and reliable water to astronauts on the International Space Station and water suppliers around the world.

By the Numbers

In the last five years, the purification center has:

  • Hosted 8,638 people since the first public tour in July 2014.
  • Held 431 tours, including recurring public tours, private group tours, stakeholder/VIP tours, and special events.
  • Produced 2 billion gallons of recycled water which is enough to fill about 2,000 Olympic-sized swimming pools!
  • Demonstrated the reliability, safety, and quality of purified water to thousands of residents, community leaders, and industry partners.

From the Board

Looking Ahead

As we celebrate five years of successful operation at the purification center, Valley Water is preparing a comprehensive water reuse master plan that will guide water reuse efforts in Santa Clara County. The water reuse master plan is expected to be completed in fall 2020. The water reuse master plan will:

  • Identify sources of water for potable, or drinkable reuse (advanced purified water) versus non-potable reuse (recycled water used for irrigation, industry, and wastewater systems and is not for consumption).
  • Identify how much advanced purified and recycled water will be generated.
  • Identify program and community partners and their roles.
  • Determine water reuse infrastructure development needs.
  • Create the program’s timeline.
  • Lay out the benefits of water reuse for the community.

Reusing water will help secure our water supply and protect the ecosystems that support it as the impacts of climate change and population growth become more present and threaten our limited water resources.

Advanced Purified Water: Tap into the Future

Experience firsthand the advanced water purification technology; register for a free tour of the Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center by going to our tour program homepage.

For inquiries about the tour program or to schedule a private tour, please email

For more information on Valley Water’s general planning efforts, click on our Water Supply Master Plan page or click on our recycled and purified water page.


  1. Please let me know when the Capitol Expressway Creek expansion in San Jose completed and be removed from flood zone. my house located within flood zone and flood insurance is big issue for me due to my retirement and living cost here is hard to swallow. Thank you


  2. Hello! I have tried several times to send my emails to you but failed. I am wondering about the project of CAPITOL EXPRESSWAY CREEK EXPANSION in San Jose when it will be completed and be removed from flood zone so all people living in this flood zone don’t have to buy flood insurance. It would be a big help for all of us. I have been living at Capitol ave for more than 40 years, never had flood but my property has been in flood zone. By reading an article about Capitol Expressway Creek Expansion almost completed last month and I just want to have a confirmation from you. Thank you so much and hopefully I will received your respond really soon. Joseph V

    On Thu, Dec 26, 2019 at 9:37 AM Valley Water News wrote:

    > Valley Water News posted: ” Innovation is the heart of Silicon Valley. In > that spirit of innovation, Valley Water commemorates the 5th anniversary of > the Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center (purification > center). Opened in July 2014, the purification center is a part” >


    1. We will submit the application to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) very soon to modify the flood plain. It will take two to three years for FEMA to process our application. Once the new floodplain is published by FEMA, residents can visit the FEMA website to verify if they are still on the floodplain or not. The City of San Jose and Santa Clara County will also update their floodplain maps after the FEMA verification.


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