Pennsylvania distributes $87M to drinking water infrastructure projects

Jan. 31, 2024
Pennsylvania officials announced $35.6 million in grant funding and $1.6 million in loans to support 11 drinking water projects across the state.

Pennsylvania officials have announced an investment of $194.3 million for 28 drinking water, wastewater, stormwater and non-point source projects across the state. Of that funding, over $87 million will support 11 drinking water projects.

The funding comes through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST). The projects include replacing lead or other corrosive pipes, rehabilitating aging systems, upgrading service capabilities, extending service to more communities, and reducing environmental contaminants through the compliance with current regulatory levels and agricultural Best Management Practices (BMP’s).

The funding for these projects originates from a combination of state funds approved by voters, Growing Greener funds, Marcellus Legacy funds, the Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act (IIJA) stimulus funds, the federal grant awards to PENNVEST from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under the Clean Water Act and the Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments, and the recycled loan repayments from previous PENNVEST funding awards.

The drinking water projects receiving funding are:

Allegheny County

  • Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority – received a $13,779,719 grant and an $18,278,381 loan to replace approximately 1,375 public and 1,260 private lead service lines in the areas of Millvale Borough, Mount Washington, South Side Slopes, Garfield, Upper Lawrenceville, Central Northside, Manchester, Perry North, Perry South, and Spring Hill. A portion of the project encompasses federally disadvantaged communities. The project will eliminate high lead exposure levels to citizens in high-priority areas and conserve water in these communities as residents are currently required to flush their systems each morning prior to use.

Armstrong County

  • Ford City Borough – received a $9,554,500 grant and a $4,770,500 loan to replace cast iron pipe containing lead joints with approximately 45,050 feet of C900 plastic water main, as well as install water service lines, 70 fire hydrants, blow-off assemblies, and other associated appurtenances. Removal of the cast iron piping, lead joints, and lead gooseneck service connections will eliminate health risks to the community that are associated with potential lead exposure. The new gasketed joints will also eliminate leakage in the pipes resulting in less water loss.

  • Ford City Borough – received a $2,407,081 grant and a $3,192,919 loan to replace approximately 1,245 existing leaded gooseneck or galvanized steel service connections with plastic piping. Of the 1,245 services to be replaced, 1,225 are for residential users while the remaining 20 services are for commercial/industrial users. Removal of any existing leaded gooseneck connections and galvanized or brass service lines will result in safer drinking water throughout the Borough.

Blair County

  • Bellwood Borough Authority – received a $3,437,176 grant and a $2,410,569 loan for Phase III of a project to replace the existing cast iron water distribution main containing leaded joints with approximately 19,610 feet of 3” to 8” ductile iron water distribution main lines and associated valves, 21 fire hydrants, service connections and appurtenances. All phases of this project will decrease potential lead contamination in the system and reduce water loss due to pipe leakage.

  • Bellwood Borough Authority – received a $211,101 grant and a $280,019 loan to replace approximately 40 existing lead or galvanized service connections with copper piping. The project will eliminate the risk of lead contamination in the community’s water supply.

Franklin County

  • Washington Township Municipal Authority – received an $8,400,000 loan to construct and relocate a booster pumping station from the Green Ridge tank to the much larger Pine Hill tank. The new booster pump station will be a variable speed packaged pump system with vertical multi-stage pumps capable of pumping at 350 gallons-per-minute. Additional installations will include concrete pads, booster pumps, motors, and new ductile iron, PVC, and copper piping. This project will create improved service reliability, water availability, and fire protection for the system’s customers.

Greene County

  • Southwestern Pennsylvania Water Authority (SPWA) – received an $894,697 grant and a $1,084,303 loan to extend the Authority’s water distribution system to serve the Brave Water and Sewer Authority (BWSA) system located in Wayne Township. The BWSA serves approximately 200 residents through 85 service connections and currently purchases its water from the Clay-Battelle Public Service District in West Virginia.
    The time it takes this purchased water to flow to BWSA’s consumers, raises the concentration levels of disinfection by-products, including Trihalomethanes (TTHMs), which are regulated by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. The project involves the SPWA extending approximately 23,455 feet of 8” water main, and installing valves, fittings, fire hydrants, an automatic meter reading unit, service connections, and restorations to connect and service the existing BWSA water distribution system.
    The project will not only bring BWSA’s water into compliance with TTHM levels but will also decrease health risks due to long-term consumption of water with high levels of TTHM for the residents of the Village of Brave.

Mercer County

  • Sandy Lake Borough – received a $4,245,927 grant and a $4,144,073 loan for improvements to its drinking water distribution system. Approximately 19,000 feet of existing service lines will be replaced. Additionally, 22,000 feet of new main waterline will be installed along with 300 new residential service meters and 30 new hydrants. This project will benefit approximately 300 customers by reducing potential water outages due to waterline breakages and ensure water quality and conservation.

Northampton County

  • Easton Suburban Water Authority – received a $1,102,099 grant and a $2,190,901 loan to replace up to an estimated 195 lead or galvanized steel lines in the North South Side and West South Side areas in the City of Easton. This project will reduce unaccounted-for water loss and potential health impacts related to elevated lead levels for the citizens in these areas.

Venango County

  • General Authority of the City of Franklin – received a $3,680,000 loan to replace cast iron waterlines with lead joints that are reaching the end of service life in the areas of Allegheny Boulevard and Front Street in Sugarcreek Borough. The Authority intends to replace approximately 7,550 water lines with 4,900 feet of C900 PVC lines and 2,650 feet of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) lines. In addition, approximately 1,600 feet of service laterals will be replaced. This project will decrease potential lead contamination and increase water flow capacity to residents.

Warren County

  • North Warren Municipal Authority – received a $3,196,500 loan to upgrade the capability of the Hillcrest Development’s booster pump station. Included in the project is the installation of approximately 4,450 feet of new 8” C900 PVC water main. Additionally, another 4,650 feet of 8” water main and 1,950 feet of 6” water main will be replaced with new C900 PVC waterline, as well as the installation of 14 new fire hydrants within the development. Lastly, a pressure-reducing valve vault will be installed where the new Hillcrest main connects to the existing system. This project will increase the system’s ability to provide fire protection and reduce water loss due to pipe leakage.

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