Marathon, Texas, USA

Water and Wastewater Systems Improvements in Marathon, Brewster County, Texas

Status: Completed


Water and wastewater services are provided by the Marathon Water
Supply & Sewer Service Corporation. The system has 330 water
accounts and 290 wastewater accounts. The majority of these accounts
are residential.

The Corporation draws its water supply from the Marathon aquifer
through two wells located near the town. This supply is sufficient to
meet the needs of the community, but the water distribution system needs
to be expanded to provide service to additional users.

The wastewater treatment system was built in 1971 with a treatment
capacity of 28,000 gallons per day (gpd). The treatment process consists
of evaporating effluent in a detention pond. Currently, the plant is
operating beyond capacity, with average monthly flows of 36,000 gpd
and a daily peak flow of 115,000 gpd. Consequently, the Corporation is
under an Enforcement Order from the Texas Commission on
Environmental Quality (TCEQ).

In addition, 36 residences are not connected to the sewer system and are
discharging their wastewater into cesspools or outhouses. These on-site
disposal systems pose a potentially serious health and environmental risk
to the area’s groundwater supply if they are not properly operated and


The Corporation has undertaken a two-phase project to expand and
improve its water and wastewater systems.

Phase I
This phase consisted of decommissioning the existing facultative pond
and replacing it with a new 2.22-acre pond, which has already been

Phase II
Improvements to the water and wastewater systems include:

  • Expansion of the wastewater treatment plant from 28,000 gpd to
    200,000 gpd
  • Changing the treatment process from effluent evaporation to
    effluent irrigation over a 40 acre field of Bermuda grass
  • Construction of an additional 2.22-acre stabilization pond,
    between the new facultative pond and other stabilization ponds
  • Construction of a 0.71-acre effluent storage pond to equalize
    flows to a pump station.
  • Installation of 36 residential wastewater connections
  • Extension of water mains to connect 19 residences to the water


Improvements to the wastewater facilities will bring the system into
compliance with TCEQ regulations and ensure adequate treatment of
wastewater, thus reducing potential health and environmental risks for
area residents. Expansion of both systems will ensure 100% water and
wastewater service coverage to residents.

Project Financing

Total Project Cost US 1.96M
NADBank Funding US 1.37M - NADBank Grant: BEIF
Other Funding Partners Border Environment Cooperation Commission’s (BECC) Project Development Assistance Program (PDAP)
The Office of Rural Community Affaris (ORCA)