Big Branch Pump Station and Force Main

Last updated: February 9, 2024

Project Overview

In 2021, the Town of Apex funded a study to determine a regional sewer solution to serve over 3,700 acres of undeveloped and partially developed land known as the Big Branch basin. The project had two main goals -  determine the most cost-effective way to provide the service and meet State-mandated Interbasin Transfer certificate requirements. The study recommended creation of two regional pump stations and a force main alignment that followed along the US-1 corridor. 

In 2022, Apex began designing of one of the two recommended regional pump stations (Big Branch #2 Wastewater Pump Station and Force Main). The Big Branch basin (shown on the map below) is partially developed and is served by four smaller pump stations. As development occurs, these pump stations will be replaced with gravity sewer to the two recommended Big Branch pump stations. 

The Town of Apex ongoing design project includes:

  • One wastewater pumping station with a capacity of 1.44 MGD
  • 4.9 miles of dual 20-inch wastewater force mains along the US-1 corridor, from Big Branch 2 (BB2) pump station to the Western Wake Regional Water Reclamation Facility
Big Branch 2 Pump Station and Force Main Map

Project Benefits

  • Eliminates four existing pump stations, providing long term cost savings and increased system reliability
  • Reduces Interbasin Transfers of water from the Haw/Cape Fear River Basin to the Neuse River Basin. This project allows all flow in the basin to be treated and discharged to the Cape Fear River Basin. Apex gets its water from the Haw/Cape Fear River Basin (Jordan Lake). Currently, the wastewater generated by Apex in the Big Branch basin (which is part of the Cape Fear River Basin) is pumped to the Apex Water Reclamation Facility for treatment, and discharged into the Neuse River Basin. 
  • Provides a regional wastewater solution for the Big Branch Basin, including large tracts of undeveloped land near the US 1 and I-540 Interchange. These are prime locations for economic development, that have remained undeveloped primarily due to a lack of sewer availability.

Project Updates 

Engineering design of the pump station and force mains is ongoing. Field personnel continue walking the project route, surveying the area and conducting environmental and geotechnical investigations. See the latest design plans for Force Main and Pump Station.

Timeline of Activities:

  • Design Project Funding Approved:  June 2019
  • Request for Qualifications – Preliminary Engineering Report (PER) Design Consultant:  May 27, 2020
  • PER Contract Executed: October 27, 2020
  • Preliminary Engineering Report Completed:  September 10, 2021
  • NCDOT Meetings:  Began in September 2021 and concluded in September 2022
  • Design Contract Executed:  March 28, 2022
  • Town Council Workshop:  July 19, 2022
  • 30% Design Completion:  October 2022
  • 60% Design Completion:  March 2023
  • 90% Design Completion:  June 2023
  • Town Council Work Session:  August 15, 2023 (View the meeting recording and supporting documents)
  • Town Council Work session:  October 19, 2023 (View the meeting recording - project is discussed around the 1 hr 17 min mark)

Education / Outreach

Property owners along the force main route will be contacted about the need for the Town of Apex to acquire a utility easement through their property to allow installation of the proposed buried sewer pipe. Impacted property owners will be invited to review the design drawings and answer questions about the project.

Timeline of Activities:

  • Property Access Permission Letters Sent:  April 28, 2022
  • Neighborhood Meeting:  September 21, 2022
  • Project Webpage Established:  February 16, 2023
  • Project Update / Easement Notification Letters Sent:  March 17 and 21, 2023
  • Neighborhood Meeting:  June 28, 2023
  • Email to Property Owners: December 15, 2023
  • Meetings with Individual Property Owners: January 2024
  • Letters to Individual Property Owners Sent: February 2024