City to repair breaks on Ridgewood

By ANTHONY WARREN,

One down, four to go.

Contractors recently wrapped up work on one of five major sewer main breaks on the Northside, with the final payment being approved for the Cherry Hills Drive project.

Jackson is expected to begin work this month on three more projects, all along Ridgewood Road. One project along Meadowbrook Road had not been scheduled at press time.

The city council recently approved paying Hemphill Construction around $111,000 to repair a burst main at 133 Cherry Hills Dr.

Up next, the city is turning its attention to repairing breaks at 5475 Ridgewood, the intersection of Ridgewood Road and Roswell Drive, and 1755 Lelia Drive, at the Ridgewood/Lelia intersection.

Work on the break at 5475 is expected to begin in the next week or so, with work on the other two slated to get under way by the middle of the month, Public Works Director Robert Miller said.

At 5475, the city will have to replace 600 feet of collapsed line between Lenox Drive and Pine Lane Drive. The work is expected to cost around $399,000.

Jackson accepted bids for the project October 4.

At Ridgewood and Roswell, the city is expected to spend $1 million to replace approximately 730 feet of collapsed pipeline, as part of a repair that “developed into a much larger issue.”

“During the repair another collapse developed,” Miller said. “A CCTV (closed caption television) investigation identified several more sections of the pipe that were deteriorating and/or missing.

“Public works is in the process of developing a complete assessment of the failures and a cost estimate for the repairs,” Miller said.

That section of roadway is currently blocked off by barricades, reducing traffic there to three lanes.

Also this month, contractors will be brought on to repair a 1,400-foot section of sewer line running from Lelia and Ridgewood to Southerland Drive.

The main collapsed earlier this year, forming a major sinkhole in the road south of Lakeland Drive.

A recent visit by the Sun showed that the sinkhole continues to expand, and now stretches across the south-bound lane.

City officials had not determined a price for that project at press time.

While those projects are expected to begin soon, city officials did not say when repairs would get under way on the Meadowbrook project.

Recently, a sewer main in the street’s 1000 block collapsed, forcing the city to install a sewer pump there.

Since then, the pump has been running 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and is only turned off for servicing.

The pump acts as a bypass, carrying waste around the collapse from one manhole to another. The device is needed, though, to keep waste from backing up into the street.

 

Recently, Mayor Chokwe Lumumba declared a state of emergency on the sewer mains, to allow the city to legally truncate the bidding process.

According to state law, emergency conditions defined as “circumstances where a delay caused by obtaining competitive bids could cause adverse impact upon the governing authorities or agency, its employees or its citizens.”

The breaks are a major source of sanitary sewer overflows and must be repaired under terms of the city’s sewer consent decree.

Overflows occur when raw sewage comes out of the sewer system and gets into the environment. Under the decree, the city is fined $500 for any SSO that enters a public waterway.

The decree is being monitored by the U.S. Department of Justice and Environmental Protection Agency.

 

 

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