NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WIVB)- The leaves are falling, the furnaces are kicking on, but the water pipes under 72nd Street haven’t been changed yet.
Last winter, about sixty residents had no running water when the underground pipes froze. Neighbors who had service shared with those who didn’t through garden hoses.
Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster announced over the summer that the City will proceed with a project to fix the problem sometime before mid-November.
“And I’m looking on this street and seeing no construction vehicles.” said 72nd street resident Carol Orsolits.
“I’m very concerned.” said resident Carleen Begiers.”I was one of the lucky ones. I supplied water to my neighbors and I’m worried that it’s gonna get me this year.”
But Mayor Paul Dyster says residents shouldn’t worry. “Well, if you were looking in your Niagara Gazette this last week, you saw that the job was advertised Thursday, Friday, and Monday I believe.”
Dyster says the City will chose one contractor in a couple weeks. “And people should be seeing work somewhere around the end of the month of October. As soon as we know the timeline, we’ll be in touch with the neighbors and let them know what to expect.”
The project will replace the water main which in some spots was only a couple feet underground, and the new line will be about five feet underground to prevent freezing. “Our administration has done hundreds of capital projects. We paved now 260 streets. If we say we’re gonna get the project done, we’re gonna get the project done.” said Dyster.
In the meantime, resident like Carol Orsolits keep their fingers crossed. “It makes me feel better, but I’m not counting it over with yet. I don’t know, I just hope and pray it will be taken care of, because it;s something that people need.”
Dyster says the project should cost the City around $670,000. He’s hoping the cost can be defrayed by a grant, or that the Niagara Falls Water Board pitches in with some of the cost, but those scenarios will not stand in the way of work beginning in a few weeks.