WEIRTON - After a major outage that struck the city more than a year ago, the Weirton Area Water Board initiated a project to prevent such an outage again.
One major aspect of that project is coming close to wrapping up, according to officials.
Crews mobilized at the city's water plant in March as new pipes were being laid into the ground to establish an alternate route to get water distributed to residents in the hope of preventing another major water outage like the one seen in June 2011.
Jonathan Carpenter of Thrasher Engineering said Welding Inc., the same company working on the Wellsburg water project, has only a few punch-list items left to complete. He presented the board with a certificate of substantial completion dated for May 21 and was still holding the final payment for the work until the items on the list are done.
Carpenter said Welding Inc. hopes to have the final adjusting change order from the company so the first phase of the project can be closed out next month. Once phase one is complete, he said the board can work on phase two, consisting of the engineering agreement which is in negotiations.
"We're still moving forward," he said.
The old 18-inch line remains untouched at the moment. The board will receive a $50,000 grant to be used for engineering costs associated with replacing the existing line, the second phase of the project, which has been in use since the 1960s.
In other business, the Sanitary Board is nearly finished with the East Weirton project with only a few houses yet to tie into the system.
Assistant Utilities Director Kevin Board said there is only 400 feet of pipe left to lay and already three taps hooked up. He said there is some additional restoration that will need to be done but crews will be finished soon. He said there could even be proposals at the next meeting to allow seven or eight more residents of Hanover Township, Pa. to hook up to the system.