Topsail Island is a 26-mile long barrier island just south of the Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune and a popular summer vacation spot in the Outer Banks area of North Carolina. Although there are only 800 full-time residents on this mostly residential island, many families vacation here and the summer tourist season drives an expanded demand on infrastructure.
There are only two access points onto Topsail Island, North Carolina Highway 50 which brings beachgoers in from Surf City on the south side and the high-rise bridge of North Carolina Highway 210 on the north side. Onslow Water and Sewer Authority (ONWASA) owns a 35-year-old 10-inch ductile iron waterline suspended from the North Carolina Highway 210 bridge that is the primary source of potable water for the north side of the island. From ONWASA’s Comprehensive Financial Report, they noted that "due to prolonged exposure to the environment, the existing water main and associated hanger/support assemblies are exhibiting visible signs of corrosion, and water leaks have occurred due the deterioration of the joints assemblies and bolts."
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