San Juan works to replace old sewer, storm drains

Slowly but surely, the City of San Juan Bautista is replacing
old sewer and storm drains.
Slowly but surely, the City of San Juan Bautista is replacing old sewer and storm drains.

The most recent work is being done at the end of Third Street, where the system leads into the wastewater treatment plant, and at the new Creekbridge subdivision where the city’s main sewer line is being replaced.

As part of its development agreement with the city, Creekbridge Homes must put the new sewer lines and storm drains at an estimated cost of about $200,000.

The pipeline runs from North Street north along Third Street, then zig-zags through the Creekbridge subdivision, which is under construction. There are 12 new manholes with 500 feet of sewer lines between each, totaling

6,000 feet of pipe.

“We keep 500 feet between them so you can get in there and clean them out,” said Will Coddington, an engineer with Hanna Brunetti in Gilroy, the hired consultant for the city.

Coddington said the existing 16-inch storm drains are being replaced with 36-inch reinforced concrete lines. The job should be completed within three weeks, he said.

The old sewer line ran under the sidewalk on the east side of Third Street, San Juan City Manager Larry Cain said.

“The sewer line that is being replaced has caused the city problems with the regional water quality control board,”

he said. “It’s a 4-inch water line and we’re replacing it with an 8-inch line.”

With the new lines, water in the storm drains will flow freely while adding more water pressure for fire protection. The thin, old-style 4-inch fire hydrant will be abandoned and replaced with a new 6-inch hydrant that can

accommodate two water hoses. The old hydrant provided for only one hose.

The sewer line runs through the subdivision leading to a nameless tributary that flows into the Pajaro River. Twice in the last three years the storm drain was responsible for sewage spillage.

“This is an issue we won’t have to deal once the line is put in,” Cain said. “Eventually we hope to replace all the old water lines.”

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