Good news: Downtown sewer work a year ahead of schedule

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – The city says the worst appears to be over. For drivers in the downtown, UK and Euclid Aveue areas, that’s really good news.

The last sewer pipe has been laid in the ground in a two-mile long sanitary sewer project that runs from Oliver Lewis Way to Tates Creek Road.

Construction on the project began in February, and was originally scheduled to be completed by the end of 2021. Normally it takes a day to replace about 12 feet of pipe on a busy downtown street. This project sped along at nearly 50 feet per day.

“We are pleased that the project has moved so quickly,” said Charles Martin, director of the Division of Water Quality. “The original sewer was 80 years old, and you never know what you’re going to find when you dig up aging infrastructure. We were fortunate that we didn’t have any major setbacks that slowed down construction.”

The sanitary sewer replacement began near Oliver Lewis Way, running through the University of Kentucky Campus and down Euclid Avenue to Tates Creek Road.

While sewer construction has ended, drivers and pedestrians traveling through the area may still experience some lane closures and detours during final sewer line testing and paving. In addition, several other utilities are working in the area. The city intends to resurface streets impacted by the sewer work after the other utility work is completed.

This project was required under a federal consent decree to improve the city’s sewers. It has both improved water quality in local creeks, and increased sewer capacity for future growth.

“I know this was difficult for businesses and residents in the area, and we appreciate everyone’s patience during construction,” Martin said. “The environmental benefits of replacing this aging infrastructure are crucial, and we’re happy to be able to say that the pipe work phase of the project was completed successfully and well ahead of schedule.”

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