Update: New York?s $1.5 Billion Drinking Water Program

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has announced the availability of the Draft Scope of Work for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Water for the Future: Upstate Water Supply Resiliency Project.

The subject of this draft scope and EIS will be comprised of the rehabilitation of the Catskill Aqueduct, WFF Shutdown System Operations and Inspection and Repair of the RWBT. These components collectively will be referred to as Upstate Water Supply Resiliency in the Draft Scope of Work. The Queens Groundwater Rehabilitation project will be referred to as In-City Water Supply Resiliency and will be the subject of a subsequent environmental review.

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection will host four public meetings in November 2014 to give residents the opportunity to offer comments on the draft scope of work for an environmental impact statement related to the critical water supply infrastructure projects. The projects are part of a $US1.5 billion program that seeks to ensure clean, safe and reliable drinking water for future generations of New Yorkers.

Its central component is a 4 km bypass tunnel that will convey water around a leaking section of the Delaware Aqueduct, infrastructure that already provides 60 percent of New York City?s drinking water. Work on the bypass tunnel was previously evaluated and a final environmental impact statement on that portion of the repair program was issued in May 2012.

Last month, DEP released the draft scope for a second environmental impact statement (EIS) that will assess other portions of the upstate repair. The draft scope outlined the following works which may involve future applications of trenchless technology:

  • The Catskill Aqueduct Rehabilitation project, which will replace valves and optimize the carrying capacity of the Aqueduct;
  • Activity at existing shafts along the Delaware Aqueduct to facilitate inspection of the entire 45-mile length of the tunnel between Rondout and West Branch reservoirs; and
  • Internal grouting to seal cracks and eliminate leaks from the Delaware Aqueduct in Wawarsing, N.Y.

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