Monroe, North Carolina, a full-service municipality adjacent to Charlotte, faces a challenge that many utility providers face: how to address its aging water distribution system infrastructure while maintaining affordable rates to its rate payers. Monroe’s water distribution system has over 1.5 million feet of piping to provide clean, potable water to 35,000 citizens. Sixteen percent of the system is aging cast iron and steel pipe material - some dating back to the 1920s.
Water Resources Department staff performed a gap analysis and developed a business plan to accelerate water main replacements. Their goal was to double the annual replacement footage. Following the lead of Colorado-based Consolidated Mutual Water Company, which was an early adopter of self-performed pipe bursting, Monroe elected
to move forward with in-house pipe bursting using Fusible PVC® pipe, the most cost-effective and least disruptive method, to rehabilitate and replace the deteriorated portions of their system. Several factors supported this decision including lowest program cost, limited additional staffing required, desired trenchless approach, ease of tapping and water service reconnections to Fusible PVC® pipe, ability to upsize the diameter of the existing network and mitigating neighborhood disruption during construction.
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