CLEARWATER, Fla. — The Florida Department of Environmental Protection approved a permit for Tampa Bay Water to fill the C.W. Bill Young Regional Reservoir to capacity and use the stored water as needed, according to a press release.

The 15.5-billion gallon reservoir helps Tampa Bay Water benefit from Florida’s rainfall and makes the regional water supply system more reliable, stated the release.

Tampa Bay Water saves surface water in the reservoir during wet periods and withdraws that water for treatment during dry periods, continued the release.

The release reported that the reservoir was taken offline for a multi-step renovation in February 2013, which included adding a drainage system to alleviate the buildup of water pressure as well as adding thicker and stronger soil cement.

“We are pleased that the renovation was completed on schedule,” said Tampa Bay Water General Manager Matt Jordan. “Having our water savings account back in service makes the region’s water supply more reliable and drought-resistant.”

Read the entire release here.