, Newburyport, MA

Local News

July 14, 2014

PI hydrant work delayed

NEWBURYPORT — City officials say that the start of a proposed assessment and repair project of water-delivery service to Plum Island has been delayed until later this week, or perhaps next week.

"Some of the equipment needed in the assessment has not arrived," said Peter Lombardi, an aide to Mayor Donna Holaday. "We are working with the engineering company (CDM Smith Inc.), and no date for starting has been finalized. But it will be starting."

About 32 hydrants will be examined within the next few months, but work begins on four hydrants in coming days, officials say.

Sections of the island that are served by the hydrants under examination will be without water for part of the day. Sewerage facilities will not be affected.

"Those areas affected (by the hydrant analysis) will get phone calls and alerts about when the work will be starting," Lombardi said today.

The locations of the quartet of hydrants to be initially studied are in the following areas, according to a statement on the city's website: end of Fordham Way, at Temple Boulevard; halfway down Columbia Way; Northern Boulevard near 20th Street; and near the intersection of Harbor Street and 76th Street.

The hydrant replacement project, impacting both the Newburyport and Newbury sections of Plum Island, is designed to assess the water-delivery system and to develop remedial measures.

City and state officials months ago revealed that some hydrants and pipe connections are deficient.

For instance, a connection near the Plum Island Bridge has broken several times in recent months, threatening the flow of water to and from the island.

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