Modern technology aids in repair of century-old deteriorating water main

Published: Nov. 18, 2016 at 6:29 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 19, 2016 at 11:40 AM EST
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Kelley Dearing Smith (Source: Kayla Vanover, WAVE 3 News)
Kelley Dearing Smith (Source: Kayla Vanover, WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Construction along Eastern Parkway is in full swing as Louisville Water Company repairs one of the city's oldest and largest water lines.
The 48-inch cast-iron water main along Eastern Parkway supplies water to Crescent Hill, the Highlands, Old Louisville and South Louisville. It was installed in 1930 and is nearing the end of its useful life. Louisville Water says most mains are designed to last 100 years. 
Several main breaks have happened in the past several years and robotic pipe inspections indicate more breaks are likely if the main isn't fixed.

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Louisville Water plans to repair the water main in three phases over three years. The first phase will fix 2.2 miles of the water main from Eastern Parkway and Beargrass Creek to Grinstead Drive near Lexington Road and Cherokee Park. This phase will be finished in April 2017.
The project is expected to create lane closures and traffic detours, but Eastern Parkway will not close entirely.
Instead of digging up and replacing the water main, the company is slip lining a new, smaller pipe inside of the aging one. This will allow the company to close sections of the road at a time. The new pipe is six inches smaller in diameter.
Customers will not lose water service while the new pipe is put in place, according to Louisville Water. The company credits this benefit to the large network of water mains that will remain in service.

>> Video: Watch Kayla Vanover's full report 

"This is the first time that Louisville Water has run technology like this," said Kelley Dearing Smith, a Louisville Water spokeswoman. "This is also the largest renovation project in our history of a water main."

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