Freeway break in Chandler drives costs to close to $8M - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Freeway break in Chandler drives costs to close to $8M

May 23rd, 2022 SanTan Sun News
Freeway break in Chandler drives costs to close to $8M

By Ken Sain
Staff Writer

The water main break at McClintock Road and U.S. 60 that caused a shutdown on the freeway this month was not the first.

The City of Chandler is still dealing with one at Price Road and the Loop 202 and Loop 101 freeways more than four years later.

This week City Council authorized spending another $800,000 on the project to replace 30-inch and 36-inch pipes in that area, bringing the total cost the city has authorized to more than $7.4 million. The state has agreed to reimburse the city up to $8 million for the project.

“When I see an $8 million price tag show up on the agenda, I usually want to know a little about it,” said Councilmember Mark Stewart. “We worked closely with the state because it was a state project. We’re basically putting the money up front, and then we’ll get that money back from the state.”

The water main break took place in February 2018 and forced the closure of the Price Road on and off ramps to the Loop 101 freeway. It did not shut down either freeway at the time.

The city hired a consultant to investigate what went wrong and how best to fix it in the following months. The assessment determined the pipeline was in poor condition and needed to be replaced.

Chandler officials hired Achen-Gardner Construction, LLC to complete the work last July. Crews are replacing the existing 30-inch potable waterline that crosses the Santan Freeway and an existing 36-inch potable waterline that crosses Price Road.

Council needed to authorize spending more money because of unforeseen conditions to the existing waterline casings under both freeways; the cost of additional waterline materials; and additional work required to provide reliable and robust water service to customers.

They are also extending the time it takes to complete the project by 35 days. That gives them 301 calendar days to complete the project since getting the notice to proceed, which was on March 28 of this year.

The city entered into a joint project agreement with the state in January and that is where the state  agreed to reimburse the city up to the $8 million limit in grant funds.