Press Release
PWSA Expands Infrastructure Investment in Strip District
Cost savings from original project directed to additional water line replacement

Pittsburgh, PA – In June of 2018, PWSA embarked on its largest ever water and sewer infrastructure upgrade in the organization’s history. The $13 million investment installed over 7,000 feet of new water and sewer lines on Smallman Street from 16th to 21st Street in the Strip District. With the original project completing under-budget and on schedule, PWSA has continued to invest in infrastructure upgrades to the water line on Smallman, between 21st Street and 23rd Street. 


This work is in coordination with Peoples Gas, who will replace nearby gas lines while the roadway is excavated for the additional water line upgrades. PWSA’s coordination efforts reduce costs and minimizes future disruption to the roadway. 


Original Smallman Water and Sewer Project Approaching Completion
This project was the largest combined water and sewer project in PWSA’s history, with an ambitious timeline of under one year. Construction efforts over the nine-month period included:
  • 7,000 total feet of water line, storm sewer, and sanitary sewer
  • 7,879 cubic yards of backfill in the water and sewer trenches – that’s over 10,000 tons!
  • Working in 22-foot deep trenches to lay the  sewer pipe
  • At peak construction, 10 concrete and four asphalt trucks ran simultaneously to complete the project on time
PWSA coordinated extensively with the merchants and residents of the Strip District for almost a year, sharing project updates and addressing their concerns. With over 30 construction site meetings and consistent written communications with stakeholders, the Authority completed this massive project with the least amount of disruption possible. 
“We hope the public is pleased with our work on Smallman between 16th and 21st Street. We’re excited to deliver even more for our customers by using cost savings to upgrade more of our aging infrastructure,” said Executive Director Robert A. Weimar. 
“This success proves that we have the manpower and expertise within your PWSA to take on large-scale, complex infrastructure projects and deliver on our promises. These pipes served their purpose for over 100 years. The work today will ensure we have a system to last another hundred-plus years into the future,” he said. 
Work commenced on Smallman Street, between 21st and 23rd Street and is expected to be completed before the end of the month by the same construction firm who worked on the initial project, Independence Excavating Inc. The street is closed to traffic during construction and crews will work around the clock as needed to compete work as quickly as possible.  

About PWSA
The Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority (PWSA) is the largest combined water, sewer and stormwater authority in Pennsylvania, serving 300,000 consumers throughout the City of Pittsburgh and surrounding areas.
  • Published
  • Thursday, February 21, 2019

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