Columbia's sewage system to receive $2.7 million upgrade

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COLUMBIA - A $2.7 million project to the Columbia sewage system will be introduced to city council Monday night.

The project will focus on upgrading sewer pipes, manholes, and lateral connections to the main. Around 15,000 linear feet of sewer main will be rehabilitated throughout Columbia.

Areas along Broadway, Rollins, Providence and Stadium will all be affected by the pending upgrades.

Patricia Weisenfelder, Columbia Utilities community relations specialist, said these locations are due for repair.

“These areas were notified by staff as needing more maintenance than normal. So, by rehabilitating them we can reduce the amount of maintenance and upkeep it takes,” Weisenfelder said.  

Weisenfelder said the pipes in the downtown are out of date.

“A lot of infrastructure downtown, especially in the downtown area is old, sometimes 80 to 100 years old. So, we’re replacing these pipes, they definitely need it,” Weisenfelder said.

The goal of the project is to reduce inflow and infiltration, or I and I, from entering the sewage system in the downtown area.

“Ultimately having newer lines will reduce I and I, and will reduce the instances of overflows, and wet water backups into homes,” Weisenfelder said.                                                  

The $2.7 million proposal will be entirely funded by Sanitary Sewer Utility bonds approved in the 2013 ballot.

Weisenfelder said construction will begin this summer. She said there won’t be any type of excavation, so roads would not close, but lane closure is possible.