By Tony Wittkowski | Business Reporter | The Herald-Palladium
BENTON TOWNSHIP — Trustees continue to push for water system improvements in Benton Township.
At Tuesday’s meeting, the board voted to replace existing water main along North Shore Drive from Madeline Avenue to Higman Park Road, and to install a water main along East Ridgeway from North Shore Drive to Adams Street.
The township will pay Merritt Engineering $14,500 for design costs and $17,500 for construction engineering services. The maintenance work includes replacing a section of aging, deteriorated and undersized cast iron pipe.
Water Distribution Supervisor Mike Baldwin told trustees they discovered the water main was in need of replacement after the township did emergency repair for the Ridgeway sewer project.
“We have a stretch of water main that runs from Higman Park Road to Madeline Avenue on North Shore Drive. It’s 4-inch piping and it’s old,” Baldwin said. “We took care of the emergency stuff at the time and this will finish that job.”
Baldwin said the township has had five breaks on that stretch of pipe in the last six years. The lifetime expectancy for the new water line is 100 years.
System reliability and fire protection in the area is expected to be improved, and frequent breakage of the old line will be eliminated, Baldwin said.
Rob Andrew, Merritt Engineering’s vice president and professional engineer, told trustees this section of water main was identified in the township’s water system capital improvement plan as the second most important line to be fixed or updated.
“You’ve already done the No. 1 recommendation, which was the Higman Park project,” Andrew said. “This is keeping with the water system plan you approved.”
Andrew said the engineering portion of the project would be completed this fall, bidding would take place in the winter and construction would start in the spring. Workers will use directional drilling under the road to minimize traffic closures.
The water system capital improvement plan was approved in January.
Supervisor Kevin White was not present for Tuesday’s meeting. The next township trustees meeting is at 5:30 p.m. on Sept. 6 at the township’s municipal building.