Lake Montebello Water Level Lowered to Facilitate Montebello Plant I Upgrades

DPW Press Release

Montebello Water Filtration Plant I is undergoing upgrades.  These improvements will enhance quality control within the Plant and help the Department of Public Works (DPW) continue to meet federal and State regulations required for safe drinking water.

This work requires that Plant I be dewatered. To maintain good water quality requirements for our NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) permit, the water level of Montebello Lake is being lowered to allow it to handle the addition of 55+ million gallons of pretreated water from Plant I.  The water will be allowed to settle in the Lake, before being discharged to Tiffany Run/Herring Run. 

These plant operational changes will temporarily alter the normal aesthetics of the Lake. There will be more exposed rocks, branches, and debris as the water level is lowered and pockets of sludge are exposed. There will also be a more profound earthy or stale odor of the water at the east end of the Lake. These changes may be observed over the next two weeks, as the plant performs its dewatering operations.  

Following the dewatering, a 30 day shutdown of the plant is expected to begin in late October.  Plant upgrades will be complete in November 2022.


It is important to note that Montebello Lake is not a drinking water source. It is a settling basin for water discharged from filtration processes at the Montebello Filtration Plants.

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Yolanda Winkler
Jennifer Combs
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The Baltimore City Department of Public Works supports the health, environment, and economy of our City and region by cleaning our neighborhoods and waterways and providing its customers with safe drinking water and sustainable energy practices.