Ironhouse Sanitary District

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October 2013 Mixer at Ironhouse Sanitary District

Ironhouse Sanitary District treated Oakley Chamber members to a facility tour and a demonstration of why “flushable” wipes don’t belong in the toilet.

Ironhouse Sanitary District (ISD) Open House

I’d actually toured ISD’s wastewater recycling facility before, when they hosted a chamber mixer about six months ago, but I’d foolishly forgotten my camera on that occasion. In case you wonder why a wastewater recycling plant might want to give a tour, and why anyone would want to take pictures of it, it’s actually pretty interesting, and neither as smelly nor as disgusting as you would expect.


About Ironhouse Sanitary District

The most common questions people ask us are what does the Ironhouse Sanitary District do and where did it get its unusual name? Much like the community it serves, the Ironhouse Sanitary District has a long and storied history.

In existence since 1945, ISD utilizes a staff of 24 field and office personnel to maintain sanitary services for nearly 30,000 customers in the Oakley and Bethel Island area. The district treats approximately 2 million gallons of wastewater every day at our modern treatment facility located near Walnut Meadows Drive, north of Highway 4 in Oakley. Reclaimed water is spread on fields ISD owns near the Oakley plant, and on 3,600-acre Jersey Island.

This treatment process, which is employed by many sanitary districts, is environmentally sound and strictly regulated. ISD does not discharge treated wastewater into the Delta, but instead relies on the natural processes of ground-based treatment to both purify the reclaimed water and enrich the soil. ISD’s fields provide an excellent source of grazing land for local cattle ranchers and a natural habitat for the Delta’s wildlife and waterfowl, including some endangered species. Jersey Island, because of its function as a wildlife habitat and proximity to the Delta, has also become a popular destination for hunters and fishermen.

The district’s unique name derives from Ironhouse School, which was a small schoolhouse that once served the families living in the rural area near Hotchkiss Tract. (A picture of the school appears with the chronology.) The school served much of the territory that today is encompassed by the sanitary district, so when it came time to select a name for ISD, the Ironhouse moniker seemed a natural fit.

From our district manager, secretaries and engineers in our office to the men and women who work in the field maintaining ISD’s canals, pipelines and treatment facilities, efficiency and customer service are our top goals. ISD employees take pride in their work and are dedicated to helping meet the community’s sanitary needs of tomorrow.