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Page last updated on August 18, 2023 at 9:48 am

Built in 1968, the Blucher Poole Wastewater Treatment Plant is a complete-mix activated sludge facility utilizing ultraviolet light technology (with a back-up chlorine system in place) for disinfection. The plant also relies on aerobic sludge digestion, sludge storage tanks, and sludge thickening/dewatering via gravity belt thickener for the treatment process.  The collection system is 100 percent sanitary. 


The Blucher Poole Wastewater Treatment Plant, on average, treats a flow of more than 4.5 million gallons per day (MGD), has a design capacity of six MGD and a peak hydraulic capacity of 12 MGD.  It treats wastewater generated in the northern part of Bloomington/Monroe County, serving the area north of 11th Street and the Smith Avenue lift station. The effluent is discharged into Bean Blossom Creek.


The plant is named for Blucher Adams Poole, who was born in 1906 and grew up in a log cabin near the Greene County, Indiana, hamlet of Elwren. Poole rose from these humble beginnings to graduate from Solsberry High School, before enrolling at Purdue University where he earned an undergraduate degree. Afterward, he began his career working with the Indiana State Board of Health in 1931, when he joined the staff as assistant sanitary engineer.  In 1934 he became chief engineer, but he had to take a leave from the Board of Health during World War II. Poole achieved the rank of major and served as chief of the water and sewage section in the office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Washington, D.C. Following his discharge from military service, Poole resumed his role as chief engineer for the Indiana State Board of Health.

He added the responsibility of being technical secretary of the Indiana Stream Pollution Control board in 1952, and served as a delegate to the 10th session of the World Health Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. This honor reflected much credit on his ability and high tribute to his profession and Hoosier state. Poole was one of 16 Americans chosen to represent the United States at the assembly, and was the only engineer in the country selected to attend. Poole was a member of several groups during his professional career.  This included: the American Society of Civil Engineers, the American Water Works Association, the American Public Health Association, and the Federation of Sewage and Industrial Wastes associations. He served on a number of national commissions and was vice-chairman of the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission. Poole died in a Fort Myers, Florida, hospital in 1982.  He was 76 years old at the time of his death.  His obituary appeared in the New York Times.


The Blucher Poole Wastewater Treatment Plant was so named to honor Poole’s dedication and hard work in the areas of environmental health and water pollution.