2017 ACEC Indiana Engineering Excellence Awards

Photo Above
Back Row: Toby Church, P.E. (Commonwealth Engineers, Inc.), Dr. Paula Maurer (SWCSD Superintendent), Keith Lindfelt (OneWater)
Front Row: Linda Isgrigg (SWCSD President), Tina Wolff (Kokosing)





Commonwealth Engineers, Inc. received a State Finalist Award for engineering excellence from the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) of Indiana.

The award was made in recognition of the Wastewater Treatment Plant Improvements Project for the Southwestern Consolidated School District.

This award is made each year by ACEC Indiana to recognize an outstanding engineering achievement that demonstrates a high degree of merit and ingenuity.  Details and photos of these and other award-winning projects may be viewed at: http://www.acecindiana.org/?page=EEA

ACEC Indiana is a professional trade association representing the business interests of the consulting engineering profession and offers professional knowledge and services to enhance the quality of life for every citizen in Indiana. Professional Consulting Engineers design roads and bridges, clean water and waste water systems, structures, mechanical and electrical systems, redevelopment of brownfields, and more. For more information about the organization, please contact Colleen Merkel (317) 637-3563.



The Southwestern Consolidated School District (SWCSD) needed to replace their existing Steel Packaged Waste Water Treatment Plant (WWTP) serving the School System in Shelby County Indiana. The existing packaged plant was aged and corroded to the point that it was financially implausible to repair.

Our goal was to build the plant during the summer of 2016 while school was out. With this time frame we had to act quickly keeping the schedule a priority. The Design-Build process provided us the flexibility to move forward quickly and efficiently as a team providing the desired quality of the end product.

The One Water Algae Wheel Waste Water Treatment System is a relatively new process and OneWater was eager to provide the system at a substantial discount if we could install it in 2016. The Algae Wheel System won out in the end with its energy savings, reduced maintenance cost, aesthetics, and ease of operation. The Algae Wheel system also uses superior materials with concrete tanks preferred over the alternative standard steel packaged plant.

  • The system is more energy efficient than alternatives, offers lower maintenance costs, an enclosed working environment for staff, and a longer life expectancy with superior construction materials.
  • The existing packaged plant space will be re-purposed after demolition.
  • The Algae Wheel process provides an aesthetically pleasing treatment process compared to a standard steel plant.

This project was one of 22 projects recognized by ACEC of Indiana for Engineering Excellence. Additionally, of those 22, this was one of only 6 projects recognized for wastewater engineering. Congratulations to Project Engineer, Toby Church, P.E., C.E.A.!