Officials back bid for water main

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ProspectBushPROSPECT — A new water main is ready to be installed.

The water main will start at the driveway of Algonquin Elementary School on Coer Road then make its way to the site of the soon-to-be-built Prospect Elementary School at 75 New Haven Road, Mayor Robert Chatfield said.

Since this line will tie the new school into the town’s water main, Region 16, which oversees schools in Beacon Falls and Prospect, will pay for 45 percent of the project and the town will pay for the other 55 percent through a grant.

The new pre-kindergarten-through-fifth-grade school is part of a $47.5 million project that includes renovations to Laurel Ledge School in Beacon Falls and a new district office.

J.J. Brennan Construction Co. of Shelton was awarded the bid to install the 2,000 feet of water main. The company was the lowest of seven bidders, coming in at $348,628. The other bids ranged from $567,106 to $405,720.

The town’s share of the project will be approximately $191,770 and Region 16 will have to pay about $156,857.

The School Building Committee and the Region 16 Board of Education have both given their approval for the project.

The water main will stop at the edge of the new school’s property and the school district will be required to hook it up from there. However, the water line will not be too far from where the school will be built, Chatfield said.

The town’s share of the project will be covered by a grant.

Chatfield said the town received a $480,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency, which will be administered by the state Department of Public Health.

“I’m glad we got the grant. We can help save the local taxpayers some money,” said, Chatfield, who thanked U.S. Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-3) for helping him obtain the grant.

While the bid for the project came in under $350,000, the price could increase, depending on how much ledge is found while digging and the amount of time that police need to be on the scene of the work site, Chatfield said.

Once the work has been completed and the pipe has made it through the winter with no problems, the town will return the unused portion of the grant to the state.

A few weeks after the water main is installed, Yankee Gas will install a gas main in the same right-of-way to service the school, Chatfield said.

Yankee Gas will split the paving cost of crossing Route 69 twice with the town, Chatfield said.

Chatfield said since the water main will cross a state road the state Department of Transportation requires the pipe to be laid at least 48 inches below the surface of the road so that it will be below the frost line.

The DOT also requires that the road is milled in 15 feet on either side of where the work has been done.

There is not currently a set date to start the project, as Chatfield awaits a document from the state Department of Public Health.

“Our goal is to start this as soon as humanly possible,” Chatfield said.

Chatfield said he would like to see the project finished before school resumes in September because the traffic is much lighter on Route 69 during the summer.