Kremmling prepares to replace main water supply line |

Kremmling prepares to replace main water supply line

One of the main problems with Kremmling’s badly leaking water distribution system will be fixed next year.

In a review of the draft budget during Monday’s town board meeting, Kremmling Town Manager Ted Soltis said the town is planning to replace its main transmission line in 2008.

The line extends from the town’s water plant located about three miles west across U.S. 40 to the western edge of the town.

Soltis said the estimated cost of the replacement of the main water supply line is about $650,000. Half of that amount will be paid by the town while the rest is expected to be obtained in matching grants from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs.

“It is a top priority project for next year,” Soltis said.

Public Works Director Doug Moses confirmed the importance of the replacement of the main transmission line, which was installed in the early 1970s.

In recent years, sections of it have begun to fail due to heavy corrosion of its steel pipes.

“If it goes down, we would have 24 hours to three days of water before we run out,” Moses said.

That reserve supply of water is maintained in the water tanks on the town’s eastern side.

Moses said that about 80 percent of the main transmission line will have to be replaced. The other 20 percent of the line was replaced in 1999 and earlier this year.

Both Soltis and Moses agree the main transmission line has to take priority over the town’s other water system problems. About 30 percent of Kremmling’s water distribution system within the town limits will also need to be replaced eventually.

The problem with the in-town water system is the decay of the steel pipes that were installed more than a half century ago. Heavy corrosion has not only decreased the flow of water within the system, but the pipes have sprung major leaks.

The corrosion is so extensive that Moses estimates that from November to April the steel pipes leak two-thirds of all the water flowing through them.

For example, last March the town’s water plant produced about 12 million gallons of treated water with only four million actually being used. About eight million gallons of the water apparently leaked out of the system.

While spot repairs can be done as needed, Moses said all of steel pipe in Kremmling’s in-town water system must eventually be replaced. He has said the work could be done in sections over the next few years.

Kremmling’s Town Council and Public Works Department have been aware of the town’s growing water problems for years. They began taking action to correct them about three years ago with the construction a water pumping plant on the Colorado River near the mouth of Gore Canyon to augment the town’s existing water supply.

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