With the first phase of water distribution line replacement nearing completion, the city of Port St. Joe will begin its first round of uni-directional flushing of the entire system on Monday


With the first phase of water distribution line replacement nearing completion, the city of Port St. Joe will begin its first round of uni-directional flushing of the entire system on Monday.



The flushing will begin from the plant moving through the main part of the city proper to 16th Street, said Public Works director John Grantland.



“We will fall back at that point and start at First Street and move west to east to the (Gulf/Franklin Center), covering Ward Ridge and Oak Grove,” Grantland said. “With two people and the data we have from (the initial uni-directional flushing in 2012) that should take us about two to four weeks.”



The work will then move to the neighborhood of North Port St. Joe and steadily spread from there to Highland View, the Beaches and White City.



The phase one replacement of water distribution lines, Grantland said should help with the flushing program in 2013.



The first phase, scheduled for completion in March, is replacing roughly eight miles of the more than 20 miles the city must replace.



“Those new pipes should cut down on flush time and allow us to increase velocity,” Grantland said.



There will be upset in the lines, Grantland and city manager Jim Anderson, cautioned.



That will likely lead to some households experiencing discoloration of water from the tap as the flushing program works through the entire system.



“Absolutely, there will be some collateral damage, shall we say,” Grantland said. “We encourage customers to call the city and let us know so we can come out and make sure those areas can be flushed as thoroughly as possible as quickly as possible.”



With the initial phase of pipe replacement nearing its end, the city is preparing to segue into the next phases.



According to Bruce Ballister with the Apalachee Regional Planning Council, who is coordinating the city’s application for a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) for replacement of lines for much of North Port St. Joe, all indications are the city scored sufficiently high on its application that the CDBG award should come early this year.



That grant would fund replacement of lines from Avenues B-D between Battle Street and Martin Luther King, Blvd., though the scope hinges in large measure on funding.



The second phase of the water distribution line replacement is scheduled to begin in May or June with a completion date sometime in 2014.



The city will have to undertake a third phase to complete the replacement of some 25 miles of aging pipe, some of which dates to the Great Depression.