City of Saginaw MI -
Where does my water come from

The City of Saginaw owns and operates a world class water system. This system has been in existence for more than 80 years. Originally the source was the Saginaw River. However, in 1946, understanding the need for an abundant, consistently high quality raw water source, Saginaw in partnership with the City of Midland formed the Saginaw Midland Municipal Water Supply Corporation (SMMWSC).

SMMWSC chose Whitestone Point as the location to build an intake into Lake Huron. Whitestone Point is located 8 miles North of AuGres, approximately 65 miles from each city. The original system design was for a maximum pumping capacity of 43 million gallons per day (MGD) of which Saginaw would receive 23 million and Midland 20 million. The total cost of the original project was $10.3 million dollars. Over the course of the last 60 years many upgrades have been made to the system. The present day design has a maximum capacity of 115 MGD with an estimated cost to duplicate of $430 million dollars.

Because of the foresight of the leaders of both cities, Saginaw and Midland benefit from having one of the best raw water sources in the world. The Great Lakes contain one fifth of the world's fresh water supply. This great source water is pumped daily to both Cities where treatment is provided to produce potable water. Potable water is water that does not contain objectionable pollution, contamination, minerals or infective agents and is considered safe for human consumption.

Saginaw is able to produce potable water by means of complete treatment which provides a multiple barrier approach designed to make sure that the drinking water is of the highest quality and safe for consumption. The Saginaw Waterworks is a conventional treatment plant. A typical flow diagram depicting the conventional complete treatment process is illustrated below:

The process is quite extensive and requires the employment of skilled professionals. Waterworks employees are encouraged to attend classes in the field and obtain waterworks system operator certifications from the State of Michigan. Operations positions require certification depending on the responsability involved. After complete treatment, water is pumped from the finished water reservoirs to 21 communities in a tri-county service area.

The Saginaw Waterworks is known not only for the quality of drinking water produced but also for its beauty. Designed in a Gothic style, the Saginaw Waterworks is a symbol of great pride for the community as a whole.

If you are interested in learning more about the Saginaw Waterworks please feel free to contact the Superintendent at 759-1640.


neighborhood associations

Virtual Tour
A Flash tour of a water system. Click the button to launch the tour.
It will not work on iPad or iPhone, or if you do not have flash installed on your device.



Did you know?
The City of Saginaw's TV station (SGTV) is now live online, 24/7? Visit
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The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) rules have changed. To see how the City of Saginaw is now handling FOIA requests, please visit our new FOIA page.


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