22 July 19.
Long term fix to water main in pipeline.
Ruapehu Mayor Don Cameron said that Council has plans in place to replace Taumarunui’s breakage prone water main under Hakiaha St as soon as possible.
We recognise that the situation is unacceptable and share everyone’s frustration with the on-going outages,” he said.
“Unfortunately it is not as simple as just digging up the roadway and dropping a new pipe into it.
The reason the pipe is suffering these breakages is due to a number of complex interrelated factors.
We need to take these into account if we are to achieve a long term, sustainable fix and avoid wasting money.
We also need to coordinate our works with the other organisations undertaking major projects along Hakiaha St.
Mayor Cameron noted that the current pipe isn't actually that old and theoretically should have many years life left in it.
“Unfortunately what has been found by Ruapehu and other councils around NZ is that this particular type of PVC pipe is not performing as anticipated.
The water main is under continual pressure from vehicles driving along Hakiaha St notably large trucks which have been getting larger and heavier over the years.
As Hakiaha St is mostly an old river bed the water main is sitting on soft ground that is continually moving.
This combined with a roadway that has been recognised as needing to be strengthened means all that weight and movement is constantly pushing down on the water main putting it under continuous stress.
Inevitably this weight and movement causes the stiff PVC piping to become brittle and we get a break.
Since the water main was originally installed we have had advances in technology that together with what we have learnt (the hard way) over the years means we are confident we can design a fit for purpose replacement.
Mayor Cameron added that in order to minimise disruption and costs as much as possible we are coordinating our efforts with the other major works planned for along Hakiaha St.
“As well as the water main other projects include; wastewater mains, power, telecommunications, street lighting, township revitalisation and the roadway itself.
Council has put together a project group consisting of our Asset Managers in roading, water and property with the other key contractors including Chorus, GHD, Veoila, NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) and The Lines Company to assist with this.
Over this construction period NZTA has been applying chip seal as a temporary road surface which can be dug up as needed until all works have been completed saving time and money.
When the major works are completed the plan is to strengthen the roadway and apply a final asphalt surface from the intersection at the northern entrance through to the Memorial Hall area.
As well as a providing a better looking and driving experience this should provide improved protection to the new water main.
Council and the other organisations involved apologise in advance for any inconvenience that may be caused but it is necessary if we are going to have the vibrant, attractive town with upgraded services that we all want,” he said.