Plans have been unveiled for a new reservoir and water treatment works to be built outside Lincoln at a cost of £40M.
The Anglian Water scheme is designed to secure water supplies for homes and industry in and around the growing city.
Water would be taken from the River Trent and stored in a reservoir west of the A1133 near Newton-on-Trent before being treated at the new works on the other side of the road.
The plans also include a pumping station and underground pipelines. The new works would be able to supply 20Ml of treated water a day.
Putting the reservoir and works on opposite sides of the road would allow Anglian Water to use the naturally sloping landscape to move the water into the works by gravity.
Building the works near Newton would also place it above the level of any possible future flooding and mean the new works could connect to the existing mains which run from Newton-on-Trent Water Treatment Works. This would avoid the need to install an additional water main.
An Anglian Water spokesman said: “We have looked at getting the water from elsewhere, including the Foss Dyke, the River Witham and groundwater sources, as well as using pipelines to transfer water from other treatment works and reservoirs.
“None of them proved suitable and really, to get the volume of water we need, the Trent looks like the only option.”
The project has been unveiled as Lincoln prepares to mark the 100th anniversary of a clean, safe drinking water supply for the city.
It was in 1911 that pipes began bringing water in from the Elkesley aquifer in Nottinghamshire. That supply was secured after the lack of clean water caused a typhoid epidemic that killed 131 people.