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  • By Dana Casadei

Bloomfield Hills water system project delayed

A decision to approve the costs of construction for a pressure reducing valve (PRV) project for Long Lake and Woodward was postponed by the Bloomfield Hills City Commission at their meeting on Wednesday, March 11, in order for the city's engineer, Hubbell, Roth & Clark, and the Oakland County Water Resources Commission (OCWRC) to obtain and present more detailed information regarding the project and the need for it to proceed. The Long Lake and Woodward PRV serves as the main feed between the upper and middle pressure district of Bloomfield Hills, servicing about 50 percent of the community. The city commission in October 2018 approved having Hubbell, Roth & Clark do engineering work and create a proposal for rehabilitation work for a pressure reducing valve project in the intersection of Long Lake and Woodward. City manager David Hendrickson explained at that time that there are five pressure relief valves in the city, which are part of the water system from OCWRC. “We've rehabilitated two in the last few years. Two are operating fine. One needs to be completely replaced.” In Hubbell, Roth & Clark's condition assessment study, they said the existing underground PRV at this location was found to be in fair condition, but the piping, bolts and valves are “severely corroded and degrading at an accelerated rate. The severe corrosion issues are a concern for the proper and safe operation of the PRV and ancillary valves. This equipment has far exceeded their service life and are in need of replacement.” They further stated that the existing vault it was housed in was too small to house recommended upgrades, and a new underground vault adjacent to the existing vault was recommended to be constructed. A pressure reducing valve is part of the system where the water comes into the city from other communities, and acts as a way of controlling the amount of water pressure to residences and businesses. The total project – in coordination with OCWRC and Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) – is estimated to cost $680,000, with a construction cost of $448,456.22.

OCWRC will do the actual replacement work, with Trojan Development Company’s performing the construction.. Because of the PRV vault’s location by an existing MDOT strain pole, MDOT required that a temporary earth retention system (TERS) be designed to support the strain pole foundation, which anchors traffic signals, on Woodward Avenue and the adjacent property while work is being done. G2 Consulting Group designed the TERS. “One of the commissioners had some technical questions,” said Hendrickson of the commission's concern at the meeting. “We’re going to bring back more technical reasons why this is needed and things of that nature.” Commissioners unanimously voted to table the resolution, and it will be brought back to them at their meeting on April 14.

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