Colleyville staff and leaders don’t know what’s underground.That’s why the city is looking into developing a study and master plan for its water and sewage infrastructure following a discussion at the Jan. 21 City Council meeting.Public Works director Bob Lowry updated the Council on the city’s infrastructure and its needed update to underground services.“This is not something we can’t afford to do,” he said during the pre-council meeting. “It’s something we can’t afford not to do.”Lowry said the underground infrastructures are in need of a plan and strategy saying for the most part it’s been out-of-sight and out-of-mind.Mayor David Kelly was on board with forwarding the project.“We don’t know everything in the ground,” he said. “We don’t know the quality of what’s in the ground.”Lowry showed that 20 percent of the current water and sewer system was in place when Colleyville incorporated in 1956. He showed that by 35+ years the condition of the pipes wears down, increasing the possibility of failure. He used an example of a water main break that happened in December near the 99 Cent Only Store off SH26.Without a plan he said the city has only been able to make repairs when things break, instead of regularly scheduled maintenance. Lowry stressed that it’s hard to make effective decisions without all the information.The plan has several facets to help the city assess its current and future needs, analyzing needed pipe sizes, the condition of more than 250 miles of pipes, develop a capital reinvestment plan and more.Staff expects the master plan to cost $498,000. Lowry said funds are available in the city’s water and sewer impact fees.“The sticker shock is there but the reality is it’s a must-do kind of thing,” Councilman Chuck Mogged said.City staff plans to bring a contract to the Council by Feb. 18 for approval.
Dustin L. Dangli, 817-390-7770 Twitter: @dustindangli