Citizens Water Company Utilizes Fusible PVC® Pipe for Pipe Bursting and Directional Drill Projects

In 1887, the City of Indianapolis created a natural gas company as a public trust solely for the benefit of its customers and the community. Today, this trust lives on as Citizens Energy Group, a broad-based utility service company that provides natural gas, thermal energy, water, and wastewater services to approximately 800,000 people and thousands of businesses in the Indianapolis area.

Citizens Water Company added Fusible PVC® pipe to its specified materials list in 2014 and recently completed seven trenchless projects with the pipe material, including two pipe-bursting and five horizontal directional drill (HDD) installations. The first project was a water main replacement along Bellefontaine Street, from 15th Street to 16th Street, and along 15th Street, from Carrollton Avenue to Bellefontaine. This installation was undertaken to improve flow and pressure to the surrounding area, replacing the existing 1880's era, 6-inch cast iron water main on Bellefontaine and the existing 1880's era, 4-inch cast iron water main on 15th Street. A new, 8-inch Fusible PVC® water main replaced each old line allowing the two mains to be combined into a single line, which eliminated dead-end mains and fire flow deficiencies while improving static flow conditions.

Pipeline Details and Project Summary
Owner: Citizens Water Company
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Pipe Burst Projects: Bellefontaine Street (15th to 16th)
15th Street (Carrollton Avenue to Bellefontaine)
Fulton Street (St. Clair to North Street)
HDD Projects: Edgehill Road
Berkshire Street
Irwin Street
Hillside & 51st Street
Caroline & 51st Street
19th & Colorado
Pipe Size: 8-inch DR18
Pipe Length: 8,000 LF
Pressure Test: 150 psi
GCs: Eagle Valley, Miller Pipeline
Subcontractors: Clear Path, I.R.E., All-Bore

Jeff Miller, manager of wet distribution design for Citizens Water, said, "Pipe bursting with Fusible PVC® pipe improved construction of the new water main by reducing restoration costs and eliminating the need for easements." Brian Smith of Miller Pipeline added, "Fusible PVC® pipe was a good pipe material choice for this project and performed very well."

Citizens Water's second project using Fusible PVC® pipe was also completed using pipe bursting. The Fulton Street (St. Clair to North Street) project replaced approximately 900 LF of 6-inch cast iron main, circa 1902, with 8-inch Fusible PVC® pipe. The main was replaced to remedy fire flow deficiencies in the area and to provide additional flow for a private development under construction in the same area. All existing service lines, hydrants, and valves were also replaced.

Miller said, "This project provided multiple benefits to the water distribution system, including replacing an existing aged main, improving system reliability, reducing customer outages, minimizing maintenance concerns, and providing adequate fire protection to a growing area."

The success of these pipe-bursting projects led Citizens Water to use Fusible PVC® pipe in five HDD water line replacement projects in 2014. These projects included Berkshire, Irwin Street, Hillside and 51st Street, Caroline and 51st Street, and 19th and Colorado.

Citizens Water has hired Eagle Valley Inc. as its general contractor for new and replacement water mains scheduled as part of its FY2014 and FY2015 Water Distribution Program. Chuck Norman of Eagle Valley, Inc. commented, "There is definitely a time and place for using Fusible PVC® pipe in the installation of new water mains."

Citizens Water plans to present its pipe bursting success stories at the 2015 Indiana State AWWA Conference and at the national No-Dig Show in Denver Colorado in March 2015.



Bellefontaine Pipe Burst


Berkshire HDD


19th & Colorado HDD