December 08, 2008

The Point vs. The Field

(It's an old picture;
I wasn't out in shorts today, I assure you!)

The pavement on our street is in terrible shape. And apparently the Township engineers have reason to believe that the pipes underneath it aren't much better. So tonight a bunch of us trooped down to the Twp. Municipal building to hear what's in store for us. I wasn't there. But T's notes look pretty comprehensive, so here's what I know:

The proposed project includes both reshaping, repairing, and resurfacing roadways as well as renovating our sewer lines.

A township sewer main runs down the center of our street. There is a 4'-6' copper pipe that runs from each house that they're not worried about. The longer pipes, or laterals, which run the rest of the way from the houses to the main are clay, with a life expectancy of about 25-40 years. They were installed between 1941 and 1943. Thus our little sewer project:

1) Install "cleanouts" on our lines to enable them to access it from outside the houses

2) Inspect laterals w/ a TV camera to assess for damage/degredation. (We'll be billed for about $150 / house for this.)

3) Most laterals are expected to be in need of replacing; concern is actually more about groundwater getting INTO the pipes than about anything leaking out. We are trying to reduce our inflow to the Stony Brook regional sewer system. Clay laterals will be replaced with thick plastic pipe, which is expected to last 100 years. (Of course, that's what they said about clay and galvanized steel at the time, too, but never mind...) Existing pipes will be removed via a trenchless, pipe "burst" method.

4) The Township guarantees the installation for 10 years.

5) In January we'll get an assessment (NOT a bill). This is just a statement to help the Township set aside the appropriate funding. When the fees are assessed, they'll be payable over 10 years. Estimated at about $110/foot.

Other notes:
  • The timing of this is probably in our favor; not many jobs going out for bid in this economy means that we'll get lots of competitive bids.
  • Sump pumps must not be tied into the sewer system.
  • We should start trying to teach our kids NOW to resist the urge to yank out the little flags the Township engineers leave poking out of the ground.
  • Work slated to start around April, should take 75-90 days to complete.
  • There will be a follow-up meeting with the selected contractor to address issues of access to our homes during the roadwork
  • Lateral sewer pipe replacement should take about 1-2 days/house
  • The sewer improvement should not have an impact on our taxes, although the associated road improvements might.
  • Curbing is an "all or nothing" proposition. If everyone on the street wants it, it runs about $26/linear foot, again assessed over a ten year period. But it's up to us to decide (as a street) whether we want curbing.
The most interesting part of the meeting? (For me, who wasn't even there.)

Our street joins another street in a kind of hairpin turn, and there's a section of public land where the two streets come together. Over here on our street, that land is universally known as "the point." But if you grew up on the next street over, you call it "the field." How's THAT for some extremely localized linguistic ethnography?!


juliloquy said...

I'm not clear on why people would want curbing. I can understand sidewalks, but is there a big difference in having curbs?

(You can tell I'm a city chick.)

MemeGRL said...

Having just done almost exactly this:
1) $150 is half or less of every camera job I was quoted.
2) the plastic-pipes-bursting-the-old-ones is totally the way to go.
3) going this way did, in fact, involve jackhammering through the floor of my house. Which was a little scary. But so much better than digging up my whole lawn.
Love the linguistics lesson too!