Construction to replace more than a half-mile of sewer pipe in downtown Fallbrook will begin in mid to late September, according to Jack Bebee, assistant general manager and chief engineer of the Fallbrook Public Utility District.
Construction crews will begin their work in the alley behind the Fallbrook Art Center and Fallbrook Chamber of Commerce, near the intersection of Main Avenue and Alvarado Street. They’ll then travel up East Alvarado to North Brandon Road, and follow Brandon to East Mission Road, the completion point of the project.
“It’s a sewer line that basically runs from (East) Mission across Main (Avenue) that was put in in the 1950s,” said Bebee. “So the problems with it are it’s old, it’s not in great condition, and it’s undersized.”
Bebee said the section of sewer lines has kept maintenance crews busy fixing problems.
“The benefit of it (the replacement project) is we will eliminate those problems and backups, and a failure,” said Bebee. “If you wait until they fail, then you’ve got a major problem. So, we’re trying to get in front of that.”
The work will be done by CCL Contracting, an Escondido-based company that had the successful low bid of $1,379,000 to execute the project.
“They have done a project for us before and did good work,” said Bebee of CCL.
According to CCL’s schedule, the project is expected to be completed by January. Crews will work from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and traffic will be impacted.
“Taffic will be down to one lane, so there will be detour signs routing people around,” said Bebee. “They’ll have to close off a lane to do the work.”
Bebee said people will still have access to the businesses along the route, and that those businesses will not have any interruption in water and sewer service.
“They basically run the new line in parallel (of the old one),” said Bebee. “The existing one stays in service, obviously, because you need it.”
Workers will have the road back open to two lanes at the completion of each day’s work.
“The workers will basically move section by section,” said Bebee. “They’ll do a certain length of pipe every day, back fill that, pave over it, and move on.”
Bebee acknowledged the work will inconvenience some people but said the project is a necessity.
“It’s something we have to get done,” said Bebee. “We’ll be doing everything we can to try to minimize impacts. If people see things or think of things they think will help reduce the impacts, feel free to call us (760 728-1125) and we can see what we can do to help address any concerns people have.”
Bebee was asked how many other areas in Fallbrook have pipes that are as equally as old and in need of replacement.
“All of them,” said Bebee, who added that FPUD has put together a priority list for line replacement projects. “We have 10 years of projects lined up to replace water and sewer lines throughout the district. This board is taking a solid approach about getting us in front of infrastructure problems.”
Bebee said the lines being put in should remain in place for a century.
“What we’re putting in now we hope makes it over 100 years,” said Bebee.