Select Page


ALERT: Avoid bodily contact with river water during and immediately after a rain event.

  1. Home
  2.  » 
  3. Department
  4.  » Wastewater Department


The City of Elyria Wastewater Pollution Control Plant was built in 1929 and has had several upgrades over the years, the most recent being in the mid-1980’s. We are currently in the design and construction phases of the next major plant upgrade. Construction on several projects has already begun and will take 20 years, or longer to complete.

On a typical day, the Elyria Wastewater Plant takes in and purifies approximately 6 millions gallons of used wastewater per day (6MGD). Imagine 6 million one-gallon milk jugs stacked in your house – that’s a lot of water! During rain events, the plant is designed to process 30 million gallons of water per day (30 MGD). The used water – or wastewater – that comes to the plant every day comes from a variety of sources:

  • Elyria residents: showers, bath tubs, laundry, dishwashers, toilets
  • Elyria’s commercial users: restaurants, laundromats, car washes, dishwashers, pan washers, sinks, restrooms
  • Elyria’s larger industries: employee restrooms, cafeterias, contact cooling water, process rinse waters, pretreated process waters



If you, or someone you know, is experiencing sewage backup issues, call 440-366-2211, option 0 to speak with an operator. They will have one of our staff members respond to your location to help identify the problem and do what they can to assist. This service is available at no charge, day or night, every day of the year. Plant Operators are always on duty. If the operator is making his/her hourly rounds when you call, please leave your name, number, and a brief description of the problem on the recorder and they will call you back promptly.

Pollution Control

In operation since 1929, the City of Elyria’s Wastewater Pollution Control Plant was one of the first facilities in Ohio to provide secondary treatment utilizing the suspended growth activated sludge process. The original facility was designed for an average flow of 3.6 MGD. Following expansions in 1962 and 1986-1989 the plant can now treat an average daily flow of 13 MGD utilizing a two-stage biological treatment system (activated sludge preceded by a trickling filter tower system). Effluent from the plant is discharged to the Black River approximately eight miles upstream to its discharge to Lake Erie.

Sanitary Collection

The first sewers in Elyria date back prior to 1900 and were combined sewers, which ran relatively short distances to the East and West Branches of the Black River. Prior to 1928, sewage was collected and discharged directly to the Black River. In 1928 and 1929 the 48-inch interceptor was constructed from the Elywood Park outfall to the newly constructed Wastewater Pollution Control Plant. Today the sanitary collection system consists of some 170 miles of gravity sewers, 25 lift stations and approximately 6 miles of force main.

Stormwater Collection

The Wastewater Pollution Control Plant has the responsibility of maintaining the City stormwater sewer system. This system consists of 108 miles of storm sewers and discharges storm water directly to the Black River. In order to preserve and protect the Black River from pollution, the City is working to reduce the discharge of pollutants by cleaning, inspecting and rehabilitating sewers; investigating and requiring cleanup of spills, asking residents to disconnect roof drains from the storm lines where appropriate, and educating the public through handouts and activities. Efforts are intended to promote a comprehensive approach to preventing stormwater pollution.


The wastewater is cleaned as it flows through the Wastewater Pollution Control Plant and is then discharged to the Black River. The Ohio EPA has imposed stringent limits on this discharge for many parameters. Cadmium, chromium, copper, cyanide, lead, mercury, nickel and zinc (just to name a few) are only removed from the wastewater incidentally at the plant, and therefore must be controlled at their sources. The City instituted an industrial pretreatment program in the early 70’s and intensified this program in 1985. With the cooperation of business and industries the Wastewater Pollution Control Plant has been able to consistently meet its permit limits for all industrial parameters.


The Wastewater Pollution Control Plant has a full-service environmental laboratory with three full-time lab technicians.  Adhering to strict quality control protocols, the lab technicians analyze plant, industrial, and residential wastewater samples for a vast array of parameters.  These include gravimetric analysis of solids; solvent extraction and measurement of oils and grease; spectrophotometric analysis of phosphorus, ammonia nitrogen, hexavalent chromium, volatile acids, chemical oxygen demand, and nitrate + nitrite; quantifying E. coli and fecal coliform bacteria using microbiological methods; analysis of trace metals (cadmium, chromium, copper, nickel, zinc, etc.) using inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES), just to name a few.  Every year, the laboratory earns the Certificate of Recognition for correctly reporting the results on proficiency samples received from a US EPA approved provider.  Participation in this proficiency program is mandated by US EPA.


Wastewater Pollution Control

1194 Gulf Road
Elyria, Ohio 44035
Phone: 440-366-2211

Shayne Stewart, Plant Superintendent
Ext. 5100

Erin Stefek, Superintendent, Sewer Collection System
Ext. 5120

Shane Derricotte, Asst. Superintendent, Industrial Pretreatment Program
Ext. 5130

Ext. 5144

Sewage Backup Issue:
Press 0 – Operates 24/7

Report – A – Polluter:
Press 0 – Operates 24/7

Report Air Pollution:
800-686-6330 (Ohio EPA)

NPDES Permit | 3PD00034*MD

Mercury Recycling
The City of Elyria Wastewater Department no longer accepts mercury for recycling. All mercury and mercury-containing items can be taken to the Lorain County Solid Waste District Collection Center located at 540 South Abbe Road in Elyria.


City of Elyria Wastewater Pollution Control

“Protecting Public Health and the Environment”