BETHEL, CT WATER
Each of the ten municipal plans of conservation
and development has policies towards aquifers. Bethel's
and the other nine have been copied and placed
into one regional file to facilitate comparisons.
Sympaug Brook Aquifer: This aquifer is within
the basin of northward draining Sympaug Brook in western Bethel.
This gentle valley contains the Sympaug
Brook Aquifer, of about 1110 acres (this and
aquifer acreages below indicate the area of saturated thickness
of ten feet or greater).
This large aquifer is generally centered along the railroad
line, with its best deposits south of the Downtown Area. There
is a small extension of the Sympaug Brook Aquifer westerly
into Danbury along Route 53.
East Swamp Aquifer: Then starting just to
the northeast of Downtown Bethel at about Milwaukee Avenue,
continuing north along Maple Avenue and Plumtrees Road, continuing
north to Meckauer Park and then into Danbury just east of
Shelter Rock, will be found the East
Swamp Aquifer. The area is about 870 acres.
This water supply resource lies along the valley of northward
flowing East Swamp Brook to Limekiln Brook, and then northerly
along Limekiln Brook.
Dibbles's Brook Aquifer: In the Stony Hill
section generally to the east of Old Hawleyville Road is found
Brook Aquifer, sized at 540 acres. Beginning
along Weed Road it follows the south flowing brook of that
name. It including a slight extension into Newtown south of
Walnut Hill Road.
Limekiln Brook Aquifer: Then further east,
to the east of Old Hawleyville Road before it intersects with
Route 302, is found the Limekiln
Brook Aquifer. with 390 acres of saturated thickness
of ten feet or greater. This aquifer then extends along Limekiln
Brook into the Dodgingtown section of Newtown, between Flat
Swamp Road and Hattertown Road.
EXISTING AND POTENTIAL
WATER SUPPLY WATERSHEDS
About 26% of Bethel's total land area, approximately 2,837
acres in the southern part of the municipality, is classified
by CT DEP as existing or potential water supply watershed
The CT Department of Public Health has recommended enactment
of an overlay protection zone for these fragile areas, and
report provides the details.
draining to the south is used by the Aquarion Water Company.
The water draining northerly from these lands is used (or
in the case of number 4 on the map, Wolf Pit Brook, may potentially
be used) as water supply for central Bethel, which has had
a municipal water supply since 1878.
Aspetuck River Watershed: Water draining southward
from about 430 acres in the southeastern most tip of Bethel
in the Aspetuck River Watershed flows thru Redding to the
Aspetuck Reservoir and then Hemlock Reservoir in Easton and
Fairfield. Some of this drinking water is then pumped back
up gradient into the Region, to Ridgefield, CT.
Saugatuck River Watershed:
Water draining southward from three separate areas totaling
to about 550 acres along the Bethel-Danbury and Bethel-Redding
Town Lines are part of the Saugatuck River Watershed.
These drainage patterns are via a) the west side of Bogus
Mountain draining to Bogus Mountain Brook, b) an unnamed brook
east of Route 53 flowing into Redding and c) both east and
west of Route 58 draining to Putnam Park Pond and then the
Little River, then continuing south into the Saugatuck Reservoir
Sympaug Brook Watershed: Two parts of the Sympaug
Brook Watershed are used for drinking supply
purposes, both northerly in their orientation.
first is from about 230 acres northeast of the F. P. Clarke
Industrial Park near the Danbury City Line flowing into Murphy's
Brook, which is an emergency supply source for the Bethel
Note that Bethel is served by the Eureka Reservoir and Mountain
Pond Reservoir. These are owned by Bethel but are located
to the west of the town line, in a part of the Sympaug Brook
Watershed located in adjacent Danbury. See also the CT Department
of Public Health's assessment
report for the Chestnut Ridge and Eureka Lake Reservoirs.
second includes the waters from about 250 acres starting at
the Redding Town Line and flowing north into Bethel's Chestnut
Wolf Pit Brook Watershed: This Brook is in
southern Bethel and parallels Route 58 on its eastern side.
The size of the watershed in Bethel is about 1,277 acres.
The 2004 - 2009 Connecticut Conservation and Development Policies
Plan for Connecticut designates the Wolf
Pit Brook Watershed as a potential future water
The safe yield for Bethel's two surface water sources combined
is .50 million gallons per day. According to the 2006 Bethel
Water Supply Plan “The Eureka Lake supply has taste
and odor problems that the existing treatment plant cannot
mitigate. The Chestnut Ridge supply is reliant on an aged
treatment plant in poor condition.
two plants, the Chestnut Ridge plant presents the more difficult
situation. As the lone source of supply for the High Service
Area it must be kept in operation continuously, however there
is no available space to build a new plant without removing
the existing one. Therefore, whether the Bethel Water Department
decided to replace the plant or abandon the source, additional
supply development is essential.”
“The Bethel Water Department has been actively pursuing
the development of additional wells behind the Police Station
in the East Swamp Aquifer. Water quality and groundwater withdrawal
potential has been evaluated and the area deemed a suitable
supply development site. Diversion permit applications are
additional supply source is developed, an evaluation will
need to be made to determine the long term costs of pumping
from the East Swamp Aquifer to the High Service Area versus
the replacement cost of the Chestnut Ridge Treatment Plant.”
POTENTIAL WATER MAIN
CONNECTIONS TO DANBURY
Main Connections to Danbury: As shown in this 2006 study, there are potential interconnections
for Northern Bethel and also interconnections for Central Bethel.
OF STREAMS IN BETHEL
The Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (CT
DEP) has developed water
quality standards in conjunction with the principles
of the federal Clean Water Act.
As a result each stream or water body in the Region has two
classifications, one for existing use, and one for ultimate
future use, written in a existing/future format such as "B/A"
or "A/AA". The highest standards are reserved of
existing and potential water supply areas, which are AA.
seeks to bring every water body in the State to a minimum
classification of "B" or better, which would not
be suitable for human consumption without treatment, but could
be suitable for recreational use, fish and wildlife habitat,
agricultural and industrial supply, and other legitimate uses.
is a non degradation policy such that stream now AA or A cannot
be reduced to B to allow discharges from industries or treatment
plants. The classification system and application to Bethel
is summarized below:
AA: Designated uses are existing or proposed drinking
water supply, fish and wildlife habitat, some recreational
use, agricultural and industrial supply. Discharges severely
A: Designated uses is potential drinking water supply;
fish and wildlife habitat; recreational use; agricultural
and industrial supply and other legitimate uses including
navigation. Discharges severely restricted. No reclassification
of A or AA allowed down to B.
B: Designated uses are varied and include discharges
from industrial and municipal wastewater treatment facilities
providing Best Available Treatment and Best Management Practices
are applied. All water bodies must eventually reach the minimum
standards of the B classification.
C and D: Indicates unacceptable quality, the goal
is Class B or Class A and DEP will issue orders to require
- Aspetuck Reservoir tributaries reaching north into
Bethel from Redding and Newtown: AA/AA.
- Bethel Reservoir Brook from west of Hudson
Street north to the Danbury City Line: B/A.
- Chestnut Ridge Reservoir and its tributaries:
- Murphy Brook (a.k.a. Braunies Brook) from
source in Danbury to pump station at Reservoir Street: AA/AA.
- Saugatuck Reservoir tributaries reaching
north into Bethel from Danbury and Redding: AA/AA.
- Sympaug Brook from Sympaug Pond and the
old Bethel Landfill flowing north to just north of railroad
bridge: B/A. Sympaug Brook continuing, from just north of
railroad bridge north to Danbury City Line: B/B.
- Wolf Pit Brook and tributaries that are
upstream of a point just north of the intersection of Route
58 with Hoyts Hill Road: A/AA.
- All other streams in Bethel such as Chestnut
Brook, Dibble’s Brook, East Swamp Brook, Limekiln Brook,