Main Street infrastructure project nears completion

Despite some minor issues with the old water pipes that are being replaced, the Route 230/Main Street infrastructure remains on schedule and under budget. That is the word from Borough Public Works Superintendent Lester Lanman following a recent meeting with the contractor and the Borough’s engineers.

“We are almost done with the underground portion of this project,” says Lanman. “By the end of the week, we hope to see all of the ditches closed up.”

Timely completion is important because the project was planned to dovetail with PennDOT’s plans to repave Route 230. That project is already underway in Londonderry Township, where crews have begun milling and resurfacing the road. PennDOT crews are expected to begin preliminary work in the Borough any day.

By completing the project prior to PennDOT paving, it enables the Borough to save more than $250,000 in asphalt costs alone to repave the street.

“PennDOT identified two weeks ago that they were going to start work on the ADA ramps at the intersections,” wrote engineer Josh Fox, of HRG, in an e-mail update sent to Borough staff and officials.

That preliminary work will coincide with sewer rehabilitation work, which is being done trenchless through an innovative plan to line the old sewer mains with cured-in-place resin tubes, which are corrosion resistant and have an anticipated lifespan of 50 years.

Expect to see temporary paving in place and all ditches along Main Street closed by the end of this week, Fox said. Excavators and most heavy equipment will also be removed from the area. Crews installing the new liners will gain access to the old pipes through manholes.

Fox said once the crews installing the liner in the sewer main have a sufficient head start, another crew will come through to install the lining in laterals from the main to the clean outs that have been installed for properties along Main Street.

Detours will not be needed during that portion of the project, though temporary moving traffic controls will likely be put in place.

As was the case with the downtown infrastructure project last summer, poor maps of the system have slowed the Main Street project in some ways.

“The lack of accurate existing water system mapping, record documents, and the increased coordination with a third party operating the water system has made this project especially challenging,” wrote Fox in his report.

Many of the delays have been caused by an inability of United Water to control water flow due to defective, or in some cases, just plain missing, valves and shut offs.

“Every time we miss a shut down because the valves don't operate, etc., additional notifications have to be posted 24-hours in advance to the residents who are going to lose water,” explains Fox. “This causes additional delays but continues to maintain the safety of the water for the residents in the impacted area and provides as much advanced notification as possible without further delaying the water work.”

Despite the massive undertaking, and the associated traffic hassles, it is worth it for the Borough to be completing this project.

“This is one of the hardest projects that the Borough would have to endure to upgrade its aged infrastructure as it has the most significant impact to almost every area of the Borough,” wrote Fox. “An improved water system with better fire protection, water quality, and pressure was the goal on the onset of this project with the Authority and we are very close to achieving that goal.”

Stage-by-Stage detour maps


230/Main Street Project archives:
Innovative technique will save money, speed 230 project
Contractor: Project is on scheduleMain Street to be open Fourth of July weekend