Waste Systems Containment


The client desired to review the existing waste system with respect to the possible increase in the amount of waste  flow that could be expected over the next several months.  The available area for the  waste system is constrained by location to the existing and equipment yard.  It was consider desirable to locate the waste system in the immediate proximity of the existing waste system configuration. The new system would allow for a tenfold increase in the amount of liquid waste generated by the pharmaceutical manufacturing processes.  The new system was intended to operate as a gravity flow system, minimizing the number of pumps and control systems that would be required for operation.  However, an alternative pumped system was also developed to allow for a comparison of alternative methods. 
Design Objective:
The objective of the study was to prepare plans to the level necessary to allow for general contractor pricing of the potential solutions, and in doing so, provide useful data to the client that could be used to determine the best path forward.  In addition to providing information that would allow for pricing of the proposed solutions, the reaction of local reviewing authorities was documented in order to determine which if either of the  two proposed schemes  would be most easily and quickly permitted.  The overall objective of the study was to determine which of the schemes would be most easily constructed and permitted , and in addition, how much the proposed solution would cost .   The design was intended to integrate seamlessly with the existing waste flow system and allow its continued operation during the time that the new expanded waste flow system would be constructed.  The finished product was to exist in the equipment yard in areas that were not currently occupied by improvements that could not be easily located in some other location within the yard.
Design Challenge:
tCarlsbad planning criteria required that the tanks could not exceed the height of the existing equipment yard in closure fence.  This enclosure fence was 16 feet tall.  The new tanks with the appropriate base installed was a minimum of 16 feet tall, therefore, additional screening was required to be located around the perimeter of the space.  Existing access points to the equipment yard conflicted with the proposed location of the tanks, and required relocation in order to continue functioning as the main entrance to the equipment storage yard supplying process materials to the ongoing pharmaceutical manufacturing facility work. An existing drainage way traversed the proposed location of the way storage facility expansion, and required relocation and redirection across the existing parking lot to the point discharge.  The existing building control area plan required recalculation in order to assure that they completed design would not violate the storage limitations imposed by the building code.

Design Approach:

A comprehensive review of the existing waste system was conducted in order to determine the existing flow line elevations for the liquid waste product and to determine the capacity of the existing system.  A survey was conducted of the existing waste  flow lines in the immediate area of the proposed work, and interviews were conducted with scientific staff and management to determine limitations on the potential use of the space included in the yard area around the existing liquid waste storage room. In addition, and exit survey was prepared for the existing building to determine how the existing exit system could be configured in a way to allow for the construction of the expanded yard area facilities, while the existing building stayed in continuous operation.  Extensive reviews were held with the Carlsbad Fire Department and  Building and  Planning  Departments to determine what constraints would be placed on the possible location of the new waste storage tanks in the yard.  Given these constraints a number of potential plans were developed and reviewed with the various parties involved in the approval process at the clients location, and with the various civic groups.  Two plans were eventually prepared, one that relied primarily on gravity flow and resulted in the construction of a below ground waste storage room to house the two 6000 gallon tanks that were required, and another which involved the location of above ground tanks and an extension of the existing waste pumping system.