BELLEVILLE — Illinois American Water Co. is investing $1.2 million to replace water main piping in parts of Belleville, East St. Louis, Granite City and Venice.
The original piping is rife with leaks, corrosion and longterm sediment accretion, according Grant Evitts, senior operations manager for the Interurban District.
“The water mains we are replacing with this project were installed over 50 years ago,” Evitts said. “Upgrading the infrastructure is essential to ensuring quality water service.”
According to utility company spokeswoman Karen Cotton, the funding for this project will be provided by revenue from customer water rates. These rates, which aren’t subsidized with taxes or fees, are based on the true cost of providing water service, including water treatment, distribution, customer service, meter reading and infrastructure investments that need to be made to ensure water quality and upgrading of the water main systems.
Work to install more than two miles of water mains begins this week on Coral Drive in Belleville. There will be 1,509 feet of 2-inch galvanized piping replaced with 8-inch ductile iron on Coral Drive from Carlyle Avenue to Gardenia and from Shady Lane to Holly Drive. Later this year, 750 feet of water main will be replaced on South Pennsylvania Avenue in Belleville.
Other installation projects throughout the year will include:
* 3,445 feet of 8-inch ductile iron main on Church Lane in East St. Louis from 78th Street to Illinois 157.
* 3,552 feet of 8-inch ductile iron main on Edison Avenue in Granite City form 22nd Street to 26th Street.
* 920 feet of 8-inch ductile iron main on Lincoln Avenue in Venice from Cleveland Avenue to Klein Avenue.
On Oct. 27, Illinois American filed a request with the Illinois Commerce Commission for a rate increase of $7.06 a month to be added to the existing $43.65 per month average residential bill. The review process is pending.
“We maintain ongoing infrastructure investments to ensure that we do not find ourselves in a crisis situation,” Cotton said. “…This will help meet the demands of today’s customers and planning for the future.”