Cowskin Creek Water Quality Reclamation Facility

Blackbird Pond (the west pond)
4182 N 135th St West
Maize, KS 67101

Sunflower Pond (the east pond)
4182 N 135th St West
Maize, KS 67101

West MacArthur and 135th N.. Kellog West to 42 (Southwest Blvd) to West Macarthur (at Schultle)
Two miles west of Maize Rd. on 135th North near 45th West

GPS Location: Mapquest

4 Acres, fountain, waterfall

5 Channel Catfish
10 Crappie
2 Largemouth Bass (18" minimum)
2 Wiper (18" minimum)

I am angling now,
Though you perceive me not hos I give line.
- William Shakespeare, The Winter's Tale
(Leontes at I, ii)

Of the 149 acres owned by the City, only 25 acres will be dedicated to plant operations. The rest of the land will be set aside for constructed wetlands, public fisheries, a public park, and a re-established native prairie in the Cowskin Creek corridor.

The entire site development will serve as an interpretive and recreational resource for the Wichita area and an educational opportunity for local schools. A public use area located off the entrance road to the treatment plant will include picnic areas with a shelter, restrooms and recreational paths.

Interpretive displays will explain the workings of the Treatment Plant. A water feature will display the clean water effluent tumbling down a natural rock cascade into the pond.

Interpretive displays are also planned to explain the dynamics of the natural floodplain, wildlife habitat and wetlands. The Kansas Wildlife and Parks Department will stock the three ponds with sport fish for an urban fisheries program that they will operate for area youth.

Cowskin Creek Water Quality Reclamation Facility Dedication & Grand Opening - Remarks by Mayor Bob Knight
Date: April 4, 2003
Contact: Liz Owens, Assistant to the Water & Sewer Director
: (316) 268-4504

Friday, April 4, 11 AM
Cowskin Creek Center

Welcome and thank you all for being here today to help us officially open this exciting addition to Wichita.

I am sure most of you already know about the population explosion that happened right here in northwest Wichita. The City of Wichita really took notice of it beginning in 1997. It was then that it was made abundantly clear that the current sanitary sewer collection system was inadequate to accommodate the explosive growth that was occurring. Something needed to be done.

At that time, we heard the voice of many concerned citizens...the last thing that the current residents wanted was a wastewater treatment plant in their back yard. The general belief was that a new facility would be ugly, smell bad and detract from property values of the folks who were already investing in this area of the city. The City of Wichita met with many of the residents through neighborhood associations and informational fairs. We took all that input that we received and applied it to what you see here today.

After much research, this site was selected as the location for the Cowskin Creek Water Quality Reclamation Facility. Historical photographs and soil samplings indicated that this was formerly a wetland. There were already many beautiful trees and greenery in the area. The Water & Sewer Department assured the citizens that this facility would be non-intrusive to the environment and even blend well. The fine folks of northwest Wichita trusted their city leaders to find the delicate balance between form and function.

I think we can all agree when we say that is exactly what happened. Today, we have this efficient sewage treatment site but also a clean water holding pond. Together, it took only 25 acres of the land allocated for this project. The remaining acreage is being used to reestablish the native prairie and the wooded Cowskin Creek corridor. It also includes 38 acres of constructed wetlands, 12 acres of public sport fishing and 12 acres of active public use areas for picnicking, hiking, biking or jogging on the recreational paths.

The City of Wichita recognizes its responsibility to be a good steward of the natural resources its citizens use and as a community we accept our obligation to preserve and protect those natural resources. Just yesterday we opened the WATER Center, the City’s award-winning site that will clean up groundwater pollution in the heart of our city. Today, we are unveiling yet another example of this commitment to the environment right here. Cowskin is an award-winning national model for state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plants…a facility that not only protects the environment...but also offers citizens educational and recreational opportunities.

Now I’d like to introduce someone who has been integral in making this facility possible. That is Councilmember Bob Martz. Bob...

Thank you, Bob.

And now we are very excited to have Dr. Ron Hammerschmidt, Assistant Secretary of KDHE with us. KDHE offered their guidance and assistance in working with the environment.

Thank you, Ron.

Now it is time to officially open this fine facility!

Thank you all for coming. Now I would like David Warren, Director of Water & Sewer to step up and take it from here, I understand there will be tours by your staff and refreshments...