IWS Prepares Chamisal Vineyards for the “Crush” Season

Unobtrusive wastewater system installation

PROJECT TYPE: Construction, Equipment Upgrade

LOCATION: Edna Valley, Central CA Coast
DESCRIPTION: IWS upgraded the existing wastewater treatment system to meet production  expansion goals and Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board (CCRWCB) requirements. A pre-treatment system, in conjunction with treatment ponds were  installed along with a 20,000 gallon process wastewater separator tank.

Located half way between Los Angeles and San Francisco on the California Coast, Chamisal was the very first vineyard planted in the Edna Valley appellation in 1973 by the Goss Family who named the estate for the fragrant Chamise (a native whiteflowered shrub that thrived on the property). With the Pacific Ocean a mere few miles away, the coastal fog and breezes create one of California’s longest growing seasons, extending the amount of time a grape hangs on the vine to develop its flavors. This area has gained recognition as one of the premier Chardonnay and Pinot Noir regions in California.
The winery was upgrading its wastewater treatment system due to production expansion to meet the Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board (CCRWCB) requirements and needed to install pre-treatment prior to dispersal to its treatment ponds for its process water. The system upgrade included installing a 20,000 gallon process wastewater separator tank. Due to site configuration, the tank needed to be installed between a parking lot and existing utilities. In addition, the tank needed to be buried 6’ below grade to accommodate the connection to the collection system and effluent pumping station – which put the bottom of the excavation approximately 21 feet below grade.


Based on the tight constraints, IWS utilized slide rail shoring to keep the side walls stable as the excavation proceeded to a depth of 21 feet. Ron Crites, PE (Brown and Caldwell) was the design engineer for the project and commented on the tank placement, “We were very comfortable recommending IWS to the owner for this installation given the complexity of site conditions. The project went smoothly.”
Project schedule was another factor in the logistics and planning of the project. Work needed to be completed during the off-season shutdown and before the rainy season hit. IWS was able to mobilize to the site and complete the work within three weeks. Fintan du Fresne, Winemaker for Chamisal Vineyards commented on the project, “IWS gave us great value on the project. They were very professional, productive, and cost effective in executing the work. We were very pleased with the final product and would highly recommend IWS to other wineries and commercial businesses that are upgrading their wastewater treatment system.”

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