News Release from OWASA

Wastewater pipe repair update: Rogerson Drive and Raleigh Road

Post Date:05/08/2019 5:12 PM
Sidewalk closure on Raleigh Road

Wastewater pipe replacement project

Last month, the Orange Water and Sewer Authority (OWASA) responded to a wastewater overflow at a pipe break on Rogerson Drive in Chapel Hill. The immediate repair slowed the leak but not entirely; a small leak remains which we have contained and are pumping back into our wastewater system. We discovered part of the pipe under Highway 54 and Raleigh Road is corroding and this repair is more difficult. We are developing a plan to replace this part of the pipe as it is critical to the sewer collection system: it delivers half of the community's wastewater flow to the Wastewater Treatment Plant.

This will be a significant project as we need to cross under Raleigh Rd to evaluate and fix as much as 700 more feet of pipe. We aim to install a temporary bypass system under the road which will enable us to re-route wastewater away from this part of the pipe, and give us access to the area of the pipe where we believe the small leak is originating from. To safely install the bypass, we need to close the sidewalk on the south side of Raleigh Road, from Environ Way to Hamilton Road (see maps below). Depending on the length of pipe we will need to replace, the work could take up to 3 months. We will know more when we have excavated around the pipe.

We apologize for any inconvenience throughout the project and will minimize disruptions as much as possible. We have created a project information page on where we will provide updates regularly as well as information on upcoming Community Construction Briefings.

This repair is an important part of maintaining resiliency for Carrboro-Chapel Hill's wastewater system. Each year, OWASA invests about $20 million in capital improvement projects - upgrading pipes, pumps, equipment, and more - to increase system resiliency. Nearly 50% of customer rates fund these critical projects.

OWASA is Carrboro-Chapel Hill's not-for-profit public service agency delivering high quality water, reclaimed water, and wastewater services. Learn more about the community's water and wastewater system at

For more information:

Simon Lobdell, Project Manager, 919-537-4247,
Vishnu Gangadharan, Capital Improvements Program Manager, 919-537-4248,

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