Tetreau: Gas line replacement will be ‘traumatic’
Published 11:02 am, Thursday, June 14, 2018
FAIRFIELD — It will be traumatic, First Selectman Mike Tetreau said.
Twenty-seven streets in the beach area, including Reef Road, are part of a gas main replacement project by Southern Connecticut Gas Company that was slated to get underway this week. On Tuesday, crews were marking Reef Road with orange, yellow and white spray paint.
“This is not a town project,” Tetreau said. “This is Southern Connecticut Gas. They’re in control of it.”
Tetreau said the town was recently informed of the project. “We will keep this information updated on our website when we get,” he said. “They told us so late that we’re trying to do everything we can to get the word out.”
Edward Crowder, a spokesman for the utility, said the company first met with town officials in early May to discuss the project and followed the established permitting and public notification process.
“SCG is timing this so it can finish before the peak heating season gets in November,” Crowder said, “in order to avoid disruptions to customers’ heating service.”
Streets in gas main replacement project
Paulding Street (Millard St to Dwight St)
Quincy Street (Reef Rd to Rowland Road)
Reef Road (Oldfield Rd to Richard White Way)
Whetstone Hill Court
According to William Hurley, the town’s engineering manager, the project will replace the gas main in the road and the service lines to homes. Service will then be transferred and the old service disconnected, before each street is inspected and repaved.
Information received by the town indicates Reef Road will be the first road under construction, which was confirmed by Crowder. Work on the 27 roads is expected to continue throughout 2018. There may be some cases where the final paving is not done until next spring.
The town plans to post a time schedule for specific roads when it becomes available.
“Construction will generally take place on weekdays, between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m., and traffic control will be provided,” Crowder said. “The focus in the weeks ahead will be Reef Road, and SCG will be keeping the town’s Department of Public Works informed as the work progresses through the neighborhood.”
Public Works Director Joseph Michelangelo said the DPW will provide periodic inspections to make sure the excavation is put back in layers, with proper backfill material and compaction to prevent settlement in the future.
The department will also ensure temporary asphalt is installed at the end of the work day, that no town utilities are damaged or affected, and that the work will not have ramifications on curbs, sidewalks and driveway aprons, Michelangelo said.
The town will make sure all aspects of the gas company’s work are permanently repaired, he said. “Other than a possible seam in the road, there should be no evidence that this work occurred say seven or nine months down the line,” Michelangelo said.
What the town won’t do, he said, is inspect the gas pipes or connections, “as that is outside of our expertise and jurisdiction.”
According to the town’s website, the existing mains in the beach area are generally over 70 years old and are low-pressure, cast iron pipes. They will be replaced with higher-pressure, smaller-diameter PVC pipes, which are the industry standard.