Eureka Main Street Water & Sewer Project

Lumos & Associates Inc, in 2003, secured a Community Development Block Grant to prepare a Preliminary Engineering Report for the entire length of the Town of Eureka’s Main Street, better known as U.S. Highway 50. The focus of the PER was to study the County’s need to replace its water and sewer mains. Results of the PER, determined the cost and scope to replace 2,850 feet of water main and 2,300 feet of sewer main along with appurtenances, including water services, sewer laterals, fire hydrants, etc. Immediately after completion of the PER and before funding could be secured, NDOT repaved  Main Street thus postponing the project for a minimum of 5 years as a results of NDOT’s no cut policy.

Fast forward to 2005, where Lumos & Associates was awarded the contract to prepare 50% improvement plans for the project. Eureka County requested an increase in the amount of water and sewer mains to be replaced to 6,100 feet of water main and 4,100 feet of sewer main. This included replacing every cross street water and sewer main for one block either side of Main Street.

In February 2009 Lumos was authorized to develop 100% plans. Eureka County again expanded the project to add or replace all lines and appurtenances within the parallel streets on both the east and west sides of Main Street, which is nearly the entire length of town! Lumos’ engineering team led by Cecilia Hamilton, P.E. bravely took on the challenge to modify the plans and have the project permitted and ready for bid by February of 2010. The final project, at the time of bid opening was 9,900 feet of water main and 4,750 feet of sewer main with a total estimated construction cost of $5,873,000. Bids were opened on March 19, 2010 and the lowest responsive bid was $3,936,007 or 33 percent below the engineers estimate.

Adding to the project challenges, Lumos identified 26 separate phases of construction that the contractor had to follow to minimize community impacts and allow certain facilities to be in place prior to starting work in more critical areas. Additionally Lumos specified extensive dewatering, trench stabilization, and sewer by-pass requirements to mitigate the expected high groundwater and requirements for the sewer system to be “live” throughout construction. Because of the favorable bid prices, Eureka County decided to expand the project scope to include additional water and sewer footage.

An additional unanticipated project challenge was permitting with NDOT. The Town of Eureka was formed when silver was discovered in 1869 and the town quickly grew to a population of over 7,000 people. However, legal title to the land, including the roads, was “murky”, complex, and slow to be resolved. To complete NDOT’s permitting process an additional utility easement was required over one mining patent. Lumos quickly established the needed easement exhibits utilizing survey documentation previously obtained from other County projects, and Ron Damele, Eureka County Director of Public Works, negotiated a utility easement within the span of one week.

Lumos provided planning, design, plans, specifications, permitting through the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection (NDEP) and the Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT), bidding assistance, consultant coordination, construction management, including inspection, material testing, review of contractor submittals, change order proposals and pay requests, and responses to requests for information on this project. The completed project involved over 15,700 LF of waterline and 14,900 LF of sewer main, 31 fire hydrants, 61 sewer manholes, and 1,500 LF sewer laterals.

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