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Lake Hodges-Hodges Reservoir-Hodges Dam

Repair Work on Hodges Dam to Begin

As part of continuing efforts to maintain and invest in City of San Diego infrastructure, repair work starts within the next two weeks on Hodges Dam, at the Hodges Reservoir north of Rancho Bernardo.

“It’s been over a century since Hodges Dam was constructed, and we are making significant investments to maintain this vital asset,” said Alia Khouri, Deputy Chief Operating Officer. “Projects like this one are crucial for the City’s aging infrastructure system in order to maintain the safe and efficient delivery of City services.”

During a recent inspection, staff identified areas in the dam wall that require repair and need to be sealed. To access these areas, the water level of the reservoir needs to be lowered by approximately 18 feet from its current level to an elevation of 275 feet. The reservoir may need to be lowered below 275 feet if additional areas needing repair are identified during the project. The repair project is expected to continue for an estimated five months.

Water transfers to maximize savings

The Hodges Dam, shown here in 1929, was built in 1918. Photo: UCSD

The Hodges Dam, shown here in 1929, was built in 1918. Photo: UC San Diego

The primary function of Hodges Reservoir is to store water for potable use. The City is working with its regional water agency partners on a plan to draw down the reservoir level to maximize water savings. Most, if not all, of the water will be transferred to other reservoirs, while some water may be released into the San Dieguito River.

“The City of San Diego is committed to maintaining Hodges Dam to ensure the protection of our water resources and public enjoyment of the reservoir,” said Juan Guerreiro, Interim Director of the City’s Public Utilities Department. “We appreciate the public’s patience while we complete the project.”

To access areas of the Hodges Dam for repairs, the water level of the reservoir needs to be lowered by approximately 18 feet from its current level to an elevation of 275 feet. As a result of the lower water level, the Hodges Reservoir will be closed for recreation while the repair project is underway. Boating and fishing will still be available at other City of San Diego reservoirs. The San Dieguito River Park trails and facilities around Hodges Reservoir will not be impacted during the drawdown or dam construction work.

Operated and maintained by the San Diego Public Utilities Department, the reservoir currently serves the San Diego County Water Authority, San Dieguito Water District, and Santa Fe Irrigation District, and the City of San Diego. San Diego operates nine reservoirs, including Hodges.

(Editor’s note: The City of San Diego, San Dieguito Water District, and the Santa Fe Irrigation District are three of the San Diego County Water Authority’s 24 member agencies that deliver water across the metropolitan San Diego region.)

Manchester Avenue Potable Water Pipeline Replacement Project Completed

The Olivenhain Municipal Water District recently completed the Manchester Avenue Potable Water Pipeline Project. In total, 3,700 linear feet of aged potable water pipeline was replaced along Manchester Avenue, Rancho Santa Fe Road and Encinitas Boulevard.

The pipelines previously serving water in this area were installed in 1961 and were approaching the end of their lifespan.

To minimize the impact on the surrounding community, construction on the Manchester Avenue pipeline replacement project took place mainly at night. Photo: Olivenhain Municipal Water District

Manchester Avenue Potable Water Pipeline Replacement Project Completed

The Olivenhain Municipal Water District recently completed the Manchester Avenue Potable Water Pipeline Project. In total, 3,700 linear feet of aged potable water pipeline was replaced along Manchester Avenue, Rancho Santa Fe Road and Encinitas Boulevard.

The pipelines previously serving water in this area were installed in 1961 and were approaching the end of their lifespan. OMWD takes a proactive approach in repairing and replacing aging water infrastructure to avoid leaks and ensure the continuation of uninterrupted water service to its customers. In the third year of drought in California, projects like this pipeline replacement, help save potable water and reduces costs to ratepayers.

“Emergency leaks are very costly, can waste millions of gallons of water, and can be disruptive to surrounding communities,” said Bob Topolovac, OMWD board director. “The investments we made to prevent these emergencies will benefit our ratepayers well into the future.”

Crews complete the final backfilling and repaving of the excavation area on Manchester Avenue required to facilitate the new pipeline installation. Photo: Olivenhain Municipal Water District

Crews complete the final backfilling and repaving of the excavation area on Manchester Avenue required to facilitate the new pipeline installation. Photo: Olivenhain Municipal Water District

Pipelines replaced included:

  • Approximately 1,900 linear feet of 12-inch pipeline in Manchester Avenue from Colony Terrace north to Encinitas Boulevard
  • Approximately 450 linear feet of 12-inch pipeline in Encinitas Boulevard west of Rancho Santa Fe Road
  • Approximately 500 linear feet of 12-inch pipeline in Rancho Santa Fe Road north of Encinitas Boulevard
  • Approximately 850 linear feet of eight-inch pipeline in South Rancho Santa Fe Road

The project completion map shows streets now fully opened to traffic and restored. Graphic: Olivenhain Municipal Water District

To minimize the impact on the surrounding community, construction took place mainly at night. The project was completed on time and with no major disruptions or water outages to the impacted community. OMWD coordinated with the City of Encinitas on a traffic management plan to mitigate construction traffic, and there were no significant traffic impacts.

 

(Editor’s note: The Olivenhain Municipal Water District is one of the San Diego County Water Authority’s 24 member agencies that deliver water across the metropolitan San Diego region.)

Olivenhain Municipal Water District Logo landscape design workshops

OMWD Completes Manchester Avenue Potable Water Pipeline Project

Encinitas, Calif. —  Olivenhain Municipal Water District’s Board of Directors unanimously approved today the filing of a notice of completion for the Manchester Avenue Potable Water Pipeline Project. Pipeline replacement work is now complete along Manchester Avenue, Rancho Santa Fe Road, and Encinitas Boulevard. In total, 3,700 linear feet of aged potable water pipeline was replaced.

The pipelines previously serving water in this area were installed in 1961 and were approaching the end of their lifespan. OMWD takes a proactive approach in repairing and replacing aging water infrastructure to avoid leaks and ensure the continuation of uninterrupted water service to its customers. As the impact of California’s drought continues to escalate, projects like this that help save potable water are even more urgent.

The New 5-Million-Gallon Water Tank in Mission Trails You’ll Never See Again

A multimillion-dollar construction project is almost done on a massive water tank in Mission Trails Regional Park. Once construction is complete, it will likely be forgotten because no one will be able to see it.

The San Diego County Water Authority is wrapping up construction on its newest flow regulatory structure on the western edge of the park. Work began in earnest at the beginning of 2021 on the five-million-gallon water tank and it’s expected to wrap up next month.

Pipleline 4 repair in March 2022 saved money for San Diego County water ratepayers

Asset Management: Successful Pipeline Repair 4 Project in San Diego

Tens of millions of gallons of water are flowing through a major pipeline in North San Diego County after successful repairs on a distressed section of Pipeline 4. The urgent repair project is a testament to the San Diego County Water Authority’s proactive Asset Management Program, which helps maintain water supply reliability while saving ratepayers money. The pipeline near Bonsall, returned to service in March, after a 10-day shutdown.

High-tech asset management program

Water Authority staff detected potential pipeline weaknesses just north of West Lilac Road in January using real-time acoustic fiber-optic monitoring. This technology locates distressed sections of pipelines even while they are in use as part of the agency’s high-tech asset management program.

As a result of the frequency or rate of change of wire breaks, Water Authority staff began preparing in late January for a 10-day shutdown to replace two distressed sections of pipe.

Preparations included:

  • Coordination with member agencies
  • Meeting with affected homeowners in the vicinity of the work
  • Preparing for the aqueduct shutdown
  • Completing engineering design for the pipe replacement; and
  • Procuring a contractor to complete the repair

Asset Management-Pipeline 4-infrastructure

The pipe was delivered on February 28.

Asset Management-Pipeline 4-March 2022

The pipeline was shutdown March 1.

Asset Management-Pipeline 4-Urgent Repair

By that evening, the pipe was nearly excavated.

Asset Management-Pipeline 4-March 2022

The next morning, March 2, the Water Authority asset management team performed

an evaluation of the wire breaks.

Asset management-Pipeline 4-March 2022

After the inspection, the installation of the new steel pipe started, including rebar

work for the concrete encasement. On March 5, the contractor poured 12 truckloads of concrete for the encasement.

Pipeline 4 March 2022

Once the pipeline replacement work was completed, crews

took a final walk through of the pipe in preparation of refill.

Maintenance crews reset a blowoff valve assembly that was removed for access to the pipeline.

P4 work completed after 10 day shutdown-March 2022

By the last day of the 10-day shutdown, the contractor had pulled the shoring and was completing backfill, allowing the pipeline to be put back into operation according to schedule.

Asset management team saves ratepayers money

Pipeline 4 repair work included collaboration with five North County member agencies served by the pipeline, and operations staff from throughout San Diego County, which helped plan and execute the timely completion of the repair.

The asset management team uses the latest inspection technologies to detect age-related defects that might be occurring on pipelines and other water conveyance facilities. By identifying defects early, they can often be corrected using localized, low-cost repair methods prior to them becoming larger, more costly issues.

The Water Authority operates and maintains a regional water delivery system capable of delivering more than 900 million gallons of water per day. The system consists of 310 miles of large-diameter pipeline, 1,600 aqueduct-related structures, and approximately 100 metering/flow control facilities.

Looking Out for Water Ratepayers in San Diego County

Every year at this time, water agencies launch the long and thoughtful process of setting rates for the next year. It’s always complex and challenging – and 2022 is an even more challenging year due to larger economic uncertainties that are compounded by inflation.

The good news is that the San Diego County Water Authority strategically invested in supply reliability in decades past when costs and inflation were lower – and we are reaping the benefits of those investments during the worst megadrought in 1,200 years.

Further, the Water Authority’s locally controlled sources have cost-control measures built into the contracts to help guard against sudden price increases.

 

San Diego Leaders Travel to Washington D.C. to Lobby for Infrastructure Funding

A delegation of over 170 local and regional San Diego elected officials, business and nonprofit leaders went to Washington D.C. this week to lobby for infrastructure dollars. This is the 14th year the region has sent a delegation. The annual trip is organized by San Diego’s Regional Chamber of Commerce.

San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria said in a news conference on Monday morning they have dozens of meetings scheduled with federal leaders to make the case for the urgent needs of the region. He and several other delegation members already met with Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

New video-Olivenhain Municipal Water District-OMWD-Water quality continues to exceed state and federal standards. In addition, due to preventative maintenance, overall water loss decreased in 2021 at the Olivenhain Municipal Water District. Photo: Olivenhain Municipal Water District New Video highlights

New Video Highlights Olivenhain Municipal Water District Achievements in 2021

In its ongoing effort to keep ratepayers and the community informed, the Olivenhain Municipal Water District produced its first “Year In Review” video report for 2021.

The video showcases key achievements of the District, using an accessible digital video format to share details, images, and key facts with ratepayers through a familiar, trusted online platform posted to the District’s YouTube channel.

“Most customers are not aware of the numerous projects and developments ongoing at OMWD, so this video is a great way to package all our wins into one place for easy viewing,” said Joe Jansen, OMWD administrative analyst.

Jansen said many of the District’s fiscal accomplishments aren’t readily visible to the public like infrastructure projects.

“Videos are great informational tools to help keep our residents informed of everything we do and to help build trust with us as their water provider,” said Jansen.

Eight achievements highlighted in the video

  1. OMWD received an AAA bond rating from Fitch Ratings.
  2. OMWD received over $3.6 million in refunds to be credited to customers over the next several years. Funds will be added to the Rate Stabilization Fund and applied as a direct credit to customers’ water bills over the next several years.
  3. OMWD achieved over $1.3 million of state and federal grant funds. Funding will offset the costs of important projects for ratepayers.
  4. OMWD continues to receive the highest recognition from industry groups. Awards recognize the District for its fiscal governance and infrastructure projects.
  5. Water quality continues to exceed state and federal standards. In addition, due to preventative maintenance, overall water loss decreased in 2021.
  6. OMWD completed a pilot study on developing a local water supply through groundwater desalination. Results were favorable from the grant-funded project and the District will continue to assess the project’s feasibility.
  7. OMWD completed several replacement and upgrade projects at its 4S Ranch Water Reclamation Facility.
  8. Proactive measures were taken to combat the spread of COVID-19. As a result, OMWD had no interruption to customer service and has completed all vital projects during the past year.
In 2021, the Olivenhain Municipal Water District completed several replacement and upgrade projects at its 4S Ranch Water Reclamation Facility. Photo: Olivenhain Municipal Water District New Video highlights

In 2021, the Olivenhain Municipal Water District completed several replacement and upgrade projects at its 4S Ranch Water Reclamation Facility. Photo: Olivenhain Municipal Water District

Award finalist in ACWA 2021 Huell Howser Excellence in Communication Award

(L to R) Board member Neal Meyers, GM Kim Thorner, treasurer Christy Guerin, customer service manager John Carnegie, board member Lawrence Watt, and assistant GM Joey Randall receive ACWA's 2021 Huell Howser Excellence in Communication Award.. Photo: Olivenhain Municipal Water District

(L to R) Board member Neal Meyers, GM Kim Thorner, treasurer Christy Guerin, customer service manager John Carnegie, board member Lawrence Watt, and assistant GM Joey Randall receive recognition as finalists for ACWA’s 2021 Huell Howser Excellence in Communication Award. Photo: Olivenhain Municipal Water District

(Editor’s note: The Olivenhain Municipal Water District is one of the San Diego County Water Authority’s 24 member agencies that deliver water across the metropolitan San Diego region.)

In a Drying West, Utah Governor Proposes Major Water Investments

Utah Gov. Spencer Cox (R) unveiled his $25 billion budget proposal last month near what was once the shore of the Great Salt Lake. But instead of waves lapping behind him, the waterline was barely visible in the distance.