Michael P. Mayko
ANSONIA — Crews have dug about 22 feet of the 30-foot trench needed to reach the broken sewer pipe that is threatening businesses along Pershing Drive.
“They’re putting in more shoring today,” said Michael D’Alessio, the city’s Public Works director, on Wednesday. “It’s probably going to take them at least three more days before they can reach the broken pipe and start to replace it.”
The nearly 100-year-old pipe which services Pershing Drive, and Howard and Clifton avenues, broke Feb. 22 dumping raw sewage into the Lemko Club and threatening the Haddad building.
Pershing Drive is lined with several businesses including Duchess Restaurant, Dunkin’ Donuts, Alexander Hardware and CVS, among others.
Cost of repairing the break is estimated at $760,000.
The cracked pipe is on a sloped area that leads down to the Metro-North Railroad tracks and the Naugatuck River. It is near the entrance to the Riverwalk.
A ramp is being built inside the trench to allow workers to reach the broken pipe.
Mayor David Cassetti said he has appointed Fred D’Amico, the city’s engineer, to conduct a daily inventory of all the work done each 24-hour time period.
The city will use a camera to photograph a nearby trunk line that leads to the sewage treatment plant to determine if there are any cracks in it. Pepe recommended to both the Board of Aldermen and the Water Pollution Control Authority last month that the extra search be done while the equipment is there.
“That way you’ll be able to sleep at night,” he said.
“I suspect we’re going to find hairline cracks in it,” the D’Alessio said. “If that’s the case, we are going to reline it now.”
Cassetti said he expects the cost to reach around $1.1 million if the city needs to reline the nearby lin
“A lot of our infrastructure is very, very old,” D’Alessio said. “We’re working on starting a 10-year project to have cameras photograph all our lines to determine if there are any problem areas.”
Meanwhile, the Ansonia Board of Aldermen voted Tuesday night to accept the resignation of Nunzio Parante, who stormed out of last week’s Water Pollution Control Authority meeting after the commissioners voted to pay the full cost of the sewer replacement project.
Parente, who served as the WPCA chairman, recommended only paying part of the estimated $760,000 repair bill and to have the city pick up the rest.Cassetti commended Charles Stowe, a first ward alderman and WPCA commission, for making the motion that WPCA pay the entire bill.
The mayor said Stowe spoke up “on behalf of our residents” and as a result ensured “the Water Pollution Control Authority pays for work done to pipes that go to their plant.”