ICF developed and implemented a Public Information and Outreach Plan for activities related to the SRVRWP, a multiphase water recycling project consisting of a treatment plant, transmission and distribution pipeline, two pump stations, and two reservoir tanks, which will serve portions of Dublin, San Ramon, Danville, and Blackhawk.
ICF's strategic communications team started working on this project prior to construction and has continued to assist Dublin San Ramon Services District (DSRSD) and East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) Recycled Water Authority (DERWA) now that the facility is operational. The outreach team conducted a communications/media audit and community assessment prior to developing a comprehensive outreach plan spanning two distinct communication phases: 1) design/environmental documentation/pre-construction and 2) construction/grand opening/delivery of water.
Pre-construction activities focused on ensuring that interested stakeholders, permitting agencies, and decision-makers were supportive of the project and aware of upcoming construction activities. Once construction began, outreach activities transitioned to keeping all affected parties informed of the construction schedule, milestones, potential construction impacts, and mitigation. Our public outreach services included writing newsletters and text for the agency's website, which provided real-time construction information in an accessible format by clicking on a neighborhood map and saw an increase in average monthly hits from 1,500 to more than 6,000.
In addition, ICF designed a full suite of collateral materials, from construction signage to refrigerator magnets and door hangers; pursued award recognition for SRVRWP; providing ongoing strategy through coordination of the Public Affairs Steering Committee; supporting DERWA presentations to local government; and facilitating continuous communication with residents. Our team also helped to implement wastewater and recycled water outreach to local schools and assisted in the planning and implementation of an education campaign designed to raise public awareness about keeping small plastics out of the sewer system. ICF also oversaw an annual Communications Roundtable that is designed to engage and educate staff from both partner agencies on the background of the recycled water project, the benefits, and communication protocols to address both internal and external issues as they arise.
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