Work is almost complete on the main portion of a $2.9 million project to extend water lines along Route 28 and some local roads to mitigate the presence of the gasoline additive Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE).
All of the water mains for the project have been installed and crews are performing testing over the next few days in order to activate the new mains, Public Works Director Michael Fowler said Monday.
“The project for the main installation is 98 percent complete,” Fowler said.
In addition, cleanup on areas for pavement restoration and loam and seed areas is also nearing completion in the next two weeks, Fowler said.
“Crews will then be starting work to install services to the individual properties where MTBE has been detected,” Fowler said. “It is expected that service installation work will last into October. New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services is covering the cost for affected properties only.”
Other property owners who do not have MTBE detected in their wells may connect to municipal water at this time, at their expense, Fowler said.
Crews from American Excavating began work on the project earlier this spring.
The anticipated substantial completion date is October 2017, according to officials.
Working in conjunction with the state, the plan calls for waterlines to be extended along Route 28 and to the Ryan’s Hill area where MTBE has been detected in a small number of wells, Deputy Public Works Director Thomas Carrier said.
In addition, new water mains will be installed at such roads as Lawrence and Stark, Public Works Director Michael Fowler said earlier this year.
MTBE was a gasoline additive that has since been banned in New Hampshire. The state of New Hampshire has established an MTBE mitigation Bureau with funds from legal settlements with responsible gasoline providers. With these funds, the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services has agreed to extend the Derry public water system to provide domestic water services to the properties affected by the contamination. Testing performed by the state found the presence of MTBE in a few wells in the Ryan’s Hill area.
The testing was then expanded to 148 houses, with six properties found to have MTBE levels over federal drinking water standards, Carrier said. And MTBE was detected in approximately another 10 properties, but at levels lower than the drinking water standards, according to officials.
After the testing, the state approached Derry officials to see if the town would be able to extend waterlines up Route 28 from the Berry Road area. Waterlines will also be extended along portions of Frost Road, Lawrence Road, Blunt Drive and Stark Road. Extending the waterlines could help with mitigating the MTBE levels, according to officials.
The estimated reimbursement from the state’s MTBE fund is $2.5 million, which would leave a balance of $421,000 to be paid by the town’s water enterprise fund.
The project will not impact water rates, according to officials.
The state will take on approximately 80 percent of the project’s cost.
Residents or businesses seeking additional information can contact Deputy Director Tom Carrier at 432-6100.