The water distribution system capital program includes work that will either involve the water main rehabilitation (cement mortar lining); replacement of existing water pipes, cathodic protection and the extension of existing pipes to meet the increasing demands of our growing city. A careful balance has been achieved that weighs the demand to replace aging water mains with that of extending the life of these water mains. In some portions of the water distribution system, there needs to be pipe improvements, so as to ensure that adequate fire protection and water quality service levels are achieved.
A Condition Rating Analysis (CRA) Tool, developed in 2004, continues to be used as a guide to identify areas for improvement and utilizes water main information stored in the Water Geographical Information System (GIS). The current process to select water mains for replacement and rehabilitation involves an annual analysis of the water distribution system. Members of the engineering and water departments meet to update the current five-year Water Distribution System Improvement Plan based on the current condition of the system. Several factors are considered in the identification of water mains that are in poor condition such as age, breaks, customer service complaints and other anecdotal information from operations staff.
Three objectives are targeted which assist in the development of the five-year needs-based capital program. These objectives provide guidance to PUSI Engineering and Waterworks Staff in determining what remedial action needs to be completed on which water mains and when they are required. The objectives are as follows:
- To ensure excellent drinking water quality is provided to PUC Customers.
- To reduce water main breaks and service outages.
- To meet demands of future city growth.
- To coordinate work with other work on the same street
In addition to the priority given to these three objectives, customer’s observations are central to decision making concerning capital investment - and subsequent costs. Currently the life expectancy for water mains is 75 - 100 years, current maintenance target levels are a replacement rate of 1% and a rehabilitation rate of 3% of the total water distribution system length.
This web site has been developed to provide our customers with additional information on the water utility construction process. Areas within the city that are scheduled for construction during the summer months are posted on the Construction Street Directory as well as on the Construction Map.