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The City of Austin, Texas, Is Piloting an On-Site Water Collection and Reuse System

    Water is not an abundant resource in Austin, Texas, and the climate crisis will only make matters worse. The city adopted a progressive water strategy in 2018. A new pilot project at the City’s Permitting and Development Center will demonstrate a different way of handling a building’s water.

    An underground collection and reuse system, or OSCAR, will collect 40,000 gallons of rainwater and air-conditioning condensate on site. The system filters the water and then stores it for reuse in landscaping. The process thereby reserves treated potable water for human consumption.
    A closed-loop advanced reclaimed assembly, or CLARA, collects up to 5,000 gallons per day of wastewater from the building’s sewers. The system treats it using advanced membrane technology, and then recycles the clean water back to the building to flush toilets and urinals. The water can be used repeatedly for this purpose.