Water main getting replaced before winter

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BRATTLEBORO — Water from a pipe under Western Avenue can be seen dribbling onto Interstate 91.

The water main, one of two that serves the town, broke in June but continues to run at full capacity.

The steel pipe was rusted and "lost its integrity," Department of Public Works Director Steve Barrett told the Reformer.

"Everything has been fine at this point," he said. "We just want to get it prepared for the winter months. It would cause problems with the ice."

Haluch, of Ludlow, Mass., was awarded the bid for replacing the 12-inch pipe that spans about 80 feet long at a cost of $320,210. About $460,000 had been budgeted for the project.

"It's really an excellent construction price," Barrett told the Select Board on Sept. 5. "We're pretty happy we're under the engineer's estimate."

After his presentation, Select Board member John Allen said, "Let's get it done."

Barrett told the Reformer that a notice to proceed has just been signed with Haluch. From Oct. 1, the contractor has 30 days to reach "substantial completion."

As of Wednesday, Haluch still needed to submit a traffic plan to the Vermont Agency of Transportation. Barrett sees a potential for one lane of traffic by the site on I-91 while the pipe is replaced.

The water main was installed in 1957. And while other pipes in town have been in place for more than 100 years, this one has been exposed to weather elements. So Barrett considers the lifespan "about right."

Reach staff writer Chris Mays at 802-254-2311, ext. 273, or @CMaysBR.

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