DLZ staff are currently serving as construction managers for the ongoing Lead Service Line Replacement (LSLR) Program for the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA). Since 2017, the LSLR Program has focused on identifying lead residential water service lines and replacing them with new copper piping. PWSA is not only replacing the portion of the line that they own and maintain, but they are also replacing the privately-owned portion of the lead service line. The Pennsylvania State Revolving Fund, low-interest loans, and grants totaling $49 million are funding the construction work.
The LSLR Program focuses on replacing lines in areas with the highest density of lead lines according to historical records. PWSA also considers income level, historical blood lead levels, children under six, and women of child-bearing age when determining specific neighborhoods where the work will occur. Upon completion, the current phase of the LSLR Program will have removed lead service lines from portions of 17 different communities. Three separate contractors, operating with up to 30 crews, are completing construction. Contractors are working to conclude by October 2020.
Under the current phase of work, nearly 4,100 lead service lines have been replaced. An additional 3,200 private service lines have been replaced at no cost to the PWSA customer. The project team identified copper at approximately 3,400 other properties. Since its inception in 2017, the PWSA LSLR program has recognized and replaced lead service lines at 6,800 residential properties, including 4,500 private side replacements, and verified a safe, non-lead service line 4,500 more properties.
Future Project Phases
Future phases of LSLR work will combine with a series of projects focusing on replacing aging and undersized water mains. The first phase of this work, initiated in early June 2020, is expected to continue for several more years with the intent of replacing 10 to 20 miles of water main annually.
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