Downingtown Borough's first public water supply system was built in 1895. One of the first major improvements to the original Borough system was built in 1924 at which time a new Downingtown Borough Water Filtration Plant began operating. During the early years of operation, the Borough's public water system customers were almost exclusively Borough residences, businesses and industries. Only a few customers were located in adjacent municipalities; primarily along border streets. The Borough operated the plant and the distribution systems and for many years this system was adequate for the regions' needs.
During the late 1970s and thereafter things began to change. More and more residential development began to appear in the townships which surround the Borough. As the area's population began to rapidly increase, so did the demand for clean, safe public water. Also changing were federal and state laws which govern the operations of the public water systems. The enactment of new more stringent statutes resulted in the need for owners and operator of public water systems to provide their customers with higher quality water than had been required under previous statutes.
All of these factors led the Downingtown Borough's Council to form the Downingtown Municipal Water Authority (DMWA) in 1987. One of the DMWA's first actions was to consolidate its service area. In 1989, DMWA purchased some facilities from Uwchlan Township Municipal Authority. The DMWA then undertook the task of planning, designing, financing and constructing a new state-of-the-art surface water treatment plant. The plant, which was declared fully operational on September 18, 1994 is sized to accomodate the needs of a rapidly growing service area.