History

Skagit PUD has been providing safe drinking water to customers in Skagit County for more than 70 years.

Owned By The People We Serve.

On November 3, 1936, Public Utility District No. 1 of Skagit County was formed by voters with an approval of 6,173 to 4,971. Within 10 years, the PUD purchased the private water systems that served the cities of Mount Vernon, Burlington and Sedro-Woolley and consolidated them into one large water system serving most of the Skagit Valley.

The District’s customer base has since swelled to approximately 70,000 people served through 600 miles of pipeline.

Initially, each city maintained its own water filtration facility, but in 1954 the PUD replaced the aging and worn out filter plants with a new well near the Skagit River. During the early 1960s, the District began diverting water from streams in the Cultus Mountains to the newly constructed Judy Reservoir, which became the PUD’s primary water supply.

Judy Reservoir (named after L.B. Judy, the District’s first general manager) brought a dependable supply of high-quality, gravity-fed water to the valley. The consolidated storage and treatment facility also meant that chlorinated water could be delivered through 11 miles of transmission lines to Sedro-Woolley and Mount Vernon. The transmission lines loop together in Burlington, creating a strong backbone for the valley’s water supply.

Judy Reservoir

Providing water for a growing community

In 1990, as the Safe Drinking Water Act was gaining momentum, the District constructed a new 12-million-gallons-per-day filtration plant to meet new treatment requirements. This plant features direct filtration and chlorine dioxide treatment followed by chlorination prior to distribution.

Prior to construction of the filtration plant, the District needed to treat Judy Reservoir with copper sulfate to kill algae. Unfortunately, that left a slight odor to the water and upset the natural food chain of the algae population. After the filtration went online, Skagit PUD was able to discontinue the use of copper sulfate and allow the algae to grow naturally. The filtration process now removes all algae.

To address the growing and changing needs of our area, the District has recently doubled the capacity of its water filter plant at Judy Reservoir. Along with this expansion, the PUD has constructed a new pumping station on the Skagit River to augment flows from four streams in the Cultus Mountains, which up until now have been the primary source for our water supply. Pulling water from the Skagit will enable us to fill Judy Reservoir when fish protection requirements limit diversions from the streams.

The new pumping station, with its five 900-horsepower engines, is capable of delivering up to 36 million gallons per day from the river to Judy Reservoir, and will ensure that sufficient water is available to meet projected demands for the next 40 years.