The Greater Cincinnati Water Works has a growing concern for aging water infrastructure in their large system which stretches from Northern Kentucky to Mason.
In some of the latest water main breaks, wooden pipes dating to the 1800s have been dug up, causing a renewed sense of urgency to replace the outdated system.
There are annual budgets for this massive project in place, but more funding is needed and it will most likely affect rate payers.
“It’s estimated it will take at least $250 million over 10 years to catch up replacing the oldest pipes and get the system in good working condition.
If revenue from water bills alone were used to pay for the work – rate payers would face annual increases of at least 10 percent or likely more for years to come, say Parrott.
Water officials say they’re exploring other ways to raise money, but caution that there is no quick fix in sight.
“We’re at major crossroads with our water infrastructure,” he said. “The need is critical, and it’s only going to get worse.””
Like so many water systems, Cincinnati is in desperate need of funds and is going to have a hard time coming up with all that it needs to get the problem under control.
Inframanage.com notes that also like so many water systems, Cincinnati has very old assets that are at the end of their life, and need replacing.
Completing infrastructure asset management planning on water networks, allows long term costs, and average annual costs to be calculated.
This in turn allows communities to debate what can be afforded, and to prepare for the work that is needed.
The risks associated with end of life replacement scenarios can be developed, and replacement programs optimized.
Analysis of different programs around the world has shown that a ‘worst first’ approach to asset replacement can be up to 10X more expensive that an optimised program.
If you are looking after a network with very old assets then Inframanage.com suggests that you do your infrastructure management planning sooner rather than later – analysis and optimization of your pipe replacement programs will save you a bunch of money.
PHOTO CREDIT: CATHY via Flickr Creative Commons License