1,600 additional locations have been selected for a free lead line replacement.
Pittsburgh, PA – The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority’s Lead Service Line Replacement Program will expand into four new neighborhoods in the new year, adding an additional 1,600 sites. Central Oakland, The Bluff, Spring Hill/City View, and Marshall Shadeland will join the other 7 neighborhoods that have received lead service lines replacements at no cost to the customer.
The Community Lead Response Team evaluated the work already accomplished, our costs to-date, and a combination of grants and loans available through a $49 million funding package from the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST) to determined that there is still funding available for even more work. Many locations are initially selected for replacement in a neighborhood, then a smaller percentage of those are positively identified to contain lead service lines. This has allowed PWSA to continue to add more locations and utilize all the grant and loan funds that were awarded at the beginning of 2019. Efficient construction practices like the “trenchless” line installation method, which pulls the lead line out of the ground through a small hole in the sidewalk versus digging a trench through our customers yards, has also minimized costs.
“Through an effective use of PENNVEST funding and skilled construction project management from our team, we’ve been able to continue to extend this program across many more sites in our service area, which I think is a great accomplishment,” said Executive Director Robert A. Weimar. “Much like our program in 2018, we have come under budget and ahead of schedule removing lead from our system. We will continue to evaluate our productivity and add more locations if we can.”
PWSA was required by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection to replace 855 lead lines between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020. It replaced that many lines between July and mid-September, nearly 10 months ahead of schedule. Since the beginning of 2019, when the PENNVEST-funded efforts began, there have been nearly 2,800 lead service lines replaced. This work is made possible by a team of customer service representatives contacting customers every day and encouraging them to join as well as Liaisons, who meet with customers and walk them through the process of a replacement so there is no confusion. Since 2016, PWSA has replaced over 5,500 lead lines throughout its service area.
To see where PWSA has replaced lead lines in Pittsburgh so far, as well as other resources for lead in drinking water, visit lead.pgh2o.com