Capital Improvements Program

The Capital Improvements Program (CIP) manages the design and construction of all capital projects funded by OWASA. These include projects in all operational areas — from OWASA’s reservoirs to our reclaimed-water system. Our five-year CIP is revised annually. In general, projects are funded and managed through the CIP if they are expected to cost more than $10,000 and if the installed equipment or materials have an expected lifespan of over five years.

We use a qualification-based selection process to procure engineering consulting services. We select contractors and consultants in compliance with all local, state and federal regulations. Bids may be solicited through an informal or formal process, depending upon the expected value of the work and based on our needs. We select the lowest responsive and responsible bid in all instances.

Development Services Projects

Development Services projects are those which are designed, funded, constructed, and managed by outside entities that dedicate the facilities to OWASA upon completion. Typically, these are drinking-water and wastewater projects, and they represent most of the growth of our overall system. Development Services projects must comply with our policies, ordinances, and other requirements, including the OWASA Manual of Specifications, Standards, and Design for public water, reclaimed water, and wastewater facilities. Three factors play into our regulatory oversight of these projects: engineering design review, construction inspection, and acceptance of the new facilities.

Completed, accepted facilities, including deeds of easement, are conveyed to OWASA for ownership and maintenance.

Service Availability Request and Project Review Form

A Service Availability Request Form requesting proof of water and/or sewer availability to a property is a requirement of both the Town of Chapel Hill and the Town of Carrboro for the issuance of a building permit. Developers, contractors, builders, and homeowners who need to request a Service Availability Form from OWASA can click the link above.

Procedures for the Development Community During the COVID-19 Pandemic – 8/11/2021 Update

While OWASA’s primary focus through this pandemic is to protect our employees while ensuring the community is provided with safe drinking water and sanitation services, we intend to continue to support the development community with their projects to the extent possible.

In keeping with National and State guidance, OWASA has enacted precautions to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Please click the link above for more information on electronic submittals and receiving inspection and testing services.

We appreciate your understanding and cooperation following these measures.

Minority Outreach Program

At OWASA, we are committed to diversity, and we maintain a highly diverse staff. As a reflection of our commitment to diversity, this core value extends to the businesses with whom we work.

We actively encourage any and all qualified and minority-owned businesses to bid on OWASA projects. If you’ve never worked with OWASA before, you can find links to our standards, specifications, forms and more below to become more acquainted with our practices. For more information or to place a bid, email our project manager or call (919) 537-4229.


For matters relating to OWASA’s Capital Improvement Program, please email our Engineering Manager for Capital Projects or call (919) 537-4248.

For matters relating to third-party projects, please email the OWASA Engineering Manager for System Development or call (919) 537-4244.