By Tamas Mondovics

In an ongoing effort to make improvements to the water distribution system infrastructure in the Riverglen subdivision in Riverview, the Hillsborough County Public Utilities Department held a public meeting at the Riverview Civic Center located at 11020 Park Dr. to discuss a project earlier this month.

According to Public Utilities Department Utility Operation Division Project Manager, Cindy S. Hutchens, the $160,000 project will replace approximately five dozen valves on water pipelines throughout the subdivision.

“Construction is expected to begin in May and be completed within 60 days,” Hutchens said, adding that the work is part of the Countywide Potable Water Main and Distribution Lines Renewal and Replacement Project.

The renewal and replacement program is funded through the Water Enterprise’s Capital Improvement Program.

“The reason for the project is to replace aging valves that PUD’s field maintenance crew have identified as not working properly,” she said, emphasizing that the majority of the valves identified were installed in the first phase of the subdivision around 1987.

“While replacing the valves, PUD will be taking the opportunity to replace fire hydrants adjacent to those valves.

At the meeting, residents were told that during the project they will be affected by occasional lane closures and water shutdowns, but customers will be notified 48 hours in advance of any planned water shutdowns.

The work will be done by Sunrise Utility Construction, the Public Utilities Department’s Pipeline Work Order Construction Services contractor.

It is noteworthy that while the sight of county utility crews regularly flushing out dead-end water pipelines is quite common, its cost in water use and labor does not go unnoticed by both residents and county staff.

According to Public Utilities Department spokesperson, Michelle Van Dyke, the department has been scheduling work as well as public meetings in connection with pipeline projects that will loop and eliminate dead-end lines as well as the need of their periodic flushing.

“Water in these lines can stagnate, causing poor odor and taste,” Van Dyke said. “Utility crews must regularly flush the dead-end lines, at the cost of using large amounts of water and labor.”

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