HVWP is pleased to release this issue of the Village Wellspring, a periodic newsletter designed to keep you better informed about HVWP activities and events. We would like to take this opportunity to thank those customers that let us know about unusual water usage, leaks, water quality changes and hydrant damage – this makes it easier for us to monitor water system health and safeguards our shared water resources. Please call or stop by anytime to talk about water – it’s our favorite topic.
STAFF & BOARD CHANGES
Full-time staffing remained constant throughout most of this past year. Recently, Assistant Superintendent Josh Chapman left to pursue his independent contracting business. Josh was instrumental in promoting excellent customer service and kick-starting a number of physical in-house operational improvements. We are currently seeking qualified applicants to fill his position. Last February, Russell Pelletier was elected to a five-year term as Water Commissioner. Russ is an experienced local building contractor and a very welcome addition to the board. Our customers benefit from his background as well as the decades of experience provided by other board members, covering the areas of drinking water operations, utility construction, municipal accounting and insurance adjustment. Collectively, this board’s unique blend of business acumen acts to protect our customers by allowing for well-reasoned, consistent decision-making and dispute resolution.
WATER TANK PROJECT UPDATE
The construction of the new 1-million gallon storage tank is underway! Located on Precinct land within the Pike quarry west of I93, the tank is the result of years of planning and an arduous site selection process. It is being constructed using the best available modern technology and will serve as the primary storage for our system when completed. The new tank will dramatically improve overall capacity and reliability, especially for fire protection. It will increase system efficiency by reducing source well pump cycling, and provide much needed storage on the west side of the Merrimack River. We are also very excited to have found a beneficial public re-use for the quarry property, which reduces overall project costs.
This past fall, about 2,000’ of new 12” water mains were successfully installed over challenging terrain by Pichette Bros. Construction to connect the tank to the existing water system at the north end of Vista Drive. The work also included the tricky drilling of a 400’ horizontal boring and installation of a 16” pipe sleeve at depths of up to 35’ below I93 by DBU Construction.
The next phase of the project is to connect the tank directly to the heart of our distribution system on RT3A, by replacing and up-sizing the water main on Vista Drive and installing new main through the woods near Hackett Hill Road. This phase will improve water quality and flow to fire hydrants; eliminate about 1,000’ of old main; assist the Town in preparing for local development; and remove our reliance on a critical old valve which restricts flow. We are currently seeking funds and partners for completion of Phase 2.
December 2018 – After months of preparation, the new 1MG glass-fused-to-steel water storage tank begins to take shape. Phase 1 completion is scheduled for June 2019 at a cost >$2M.
OTHER ITEMS OF INTEREST
2019 Field Season: Upcoming projects include completion of Phase 1 of the tank project; mapping of water system assets (hydrants, valves, etc.); initiation of the North Well Station rehabilitation and system-wide telecommunication upgrades; and the installation of as many new water meters as possible. We will continue to oversee water component installations for new homes at University Heights and Carriage Manor. We will also be out flushing hydrants, repairing leaks, etc. We appreciate your patience and caution as we temporarily disrupt water and traffic.
Lilac Bridge Water Main: The new 12” HDPE/ductile iron river crossing at Lilac Bridge was activated in May 2018. Construction of this new water main began in late 2017 as part of the bridge replacement project. The $200K crossing provides vital backup in the event of another water main problem on the Main Street Bridge. Contractors E.D. Swett and F.L. Merrill Construction did a fantastic job installing the crossing despite facing challenges associated with winter weather, underground “surprises” and funding lapses. The Precinct office frontage received a welcome facelift at the end of the project – including new pavement/landscaping, the removal of an unsightly utility pole, and improved access. Come check it out!
South Well Station: We are nearing completion of the rehabilitation of the second of three key pump stations. All physical systems were reviewed and updated as needed to improve safety, functionality and compliance. Much of the work was done in-house to minimize cost and maximize operability.
Hydrants & You: We truly appreciate all who clear snow and brush from hydrants near their homes and businesses. This greatly improves fire protection and reduces costs. Thank you!
New Meters: Please call us to make an appointment to change out your meter. Meter replacement is a
core component of our state-approved water conservation plan. New meters are much more efficient and less expensive to operate. They will allow us to detect costly water leaks for you in a much quicker fashion. Additionally, you are now able to access your water usage information and trends via a web link should you so choose.
Workers prepare to pull 400’ of 16” x 12” HDPE water main below RT93 in September 2018.
The new walking bridge holds critical water and sewer mains…and provides a convenient way to get some exercise and pay your water bills at the same time