Archive for Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Water main break closes 19th and Harper intersection near Douglas County Fairgrounds

July 31, 2012


East Lawrence motorists, particularly those heading to the Douglas County Fair, may need to take a detour after a major waterline break at 19th and Harper streets.

City officials announced the intersection of 19th and Harper streets will be closed to traffic through at least Wednesday morning as crews repair a 12-inch water main that has broken.

The intersection is at the northwest corner of the fairgrounds, which is hosting the Douglas County Fair this week. All main entrances to the fair along Harper Street remain open, but city crews are directing motorists to access Harper via a street other than 19th. Crews have set up a detour that uses Edgelea.

Megan Gilliland, spokeswoman for the city, said the water main break has not disrupted water service to the fairgrounds. But she said the Lawrence Humane Society and a trailer park in the area both are expected to be without water during parts of the day. A spokesman with the Humane Society, though, said the disruption is expected to short enough to not create a problem in caring for animals this afternoon.

Gilliland said at noon that crews are estimating it will take about eight hours to repair the leak. Street repairs, however, are expected to last into Wednesday morning.

Shifting of soils due to dry weather is thought to be the cause of the main break, she said.


mikekt 1 year, 8 months ago

If you want to see what Lawrence is up against, long term with an aging water system, do a Google search for : Deteriorating Buried Infrastructure Management Challenges and Strategies .

It is a May 2002 report from the EPA; but nothing in the reality of what is under ground in Lawrence's Water System, is, or should be, that far different from this dated information, now.

They have probably come a ways since 2002, in terms of plastic potable water systems & or relining / replacement technologies for water pipes.... but how they were all built, of that age, is probably similar.

Many midwestern water systems were well built in, before the time of Chlorination of water arrived, in the early "19-teens"

Prior to chlorination, people drank out of wells that would get contaminated with surface runoff & diseases ( and become ill ) and used public water systems to fight fires, water animals & believe it or not, in downtown KC, water pressure was used to power early elevators .

What you see from KC nightly with their water mains breaks on TV right now is the coming storm for most midwestern cities water systems, as the above mentioned report outlines.

By 1912, one hundred years ago, Kansas Cities water system was south of Westport, The Country Club Plaza, 63rd & Brookside Blvd & well into 75th & Wornal Rd, in the Waldo Area, with pit cast iron pipes, that have an expected life span of 100 to 140 years of dependable use.

Some of the "engineered & cost improvements" ( 1920s to 1960s ) into "how cast iron pipes were made", such as spin cast pipes, actually have an even shorter predictable life span... because while improved construction of later pipes lead to thiner walled, lighter, more uniform strength pipes, their "spin cast" thiner pipe walls have turned out to be not so long lasting, as older pit cast pipes were .

Who would have thought.....and spoken out loud ?

Bear in mind, metallurgy didn't really get rolling until WW2 .

Nobody fully understood the faults that they would build into water main pipes or the future costs to undo it all some day .

1880's is a reasonable date for current modern systems to begin in with metal pipe use. And it was a great improvement over wood bound like barrels, pipes with plugs driven in them into holes in the earth for fire fighting.......which is where the term of calling a "fire hydrant" a "fire plug" began .

Back then people were over building things of metal, to make them work but making them last forever, or as long as "whatever", was beyond their thought horizons or the knowledge of metallurgy to succeed at what they were doing, back then.


crosstownbytch1 1 year, 8 months ago

And they need to learn how to slow down on this street because this is a family neighborhood with little kids that play out side and they all think it is a speedway!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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