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Paonia in-town water main project on schedule

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Photo by Tamie Meck Workers with the Town of Paonia and TSM Construction, LLC, patch a section of Second Street at Rio Grande Avenue last Wednesday as part of the town's water system improvement project.

The Town of Paonia's water system improvement project is on schedule and within budget, according to Paonia Public Works Director, Travis Loberg. The three-phase project involves replacement of about 5,600 lineal feet of water main line and associated repairs and upgrades. Some of the segments of water line being replaced are more than 50 years old and made of cast iron and steel pipes in various stages of disrepair.

Loberg reports that, overall, the project has gone well, and the problems that have arisen -- Loberg has reported to town trustees of problems with low water pressure, brief periods of loss of service and other minor issues -- have been normal and not unexpected for a project of this type and scope.

Work began last May and contractor TSM Construction, LLC, is slightly ahead of its work timeline, said Loberg. On Monday, crews were tying lines into the new system in the 200-300 blocks of Box Elder Avenue and finishing work on concrete drain pans on Box Elder.

Work on Second Street east of the railroad track is almost complete. Work on the segment of the project west of the tracks on Second Street from Box Elder is expected to begin the week of Sept. 18 and last between two and three weeks. Work will be done in one-block segments. During that time, the public can expect one-block detours along Third Street between Box Elder and Second Street.

Once that segment is complete, work on the final segment on Second Street from Box Elder to Grand Avenue will begin. Work is expected to be completed in early November, said Loberg.

Funding for the roughly $745,000 three-phase project comes from low-interest loans from the Colorado Water Resources and Power Development Authority and from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs, with matching funds from the town. The funds were all originally intended for water storage projects and were approved for distribution projects by the board in 2016.

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