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Featured Project: Utilities Group Water & Sewer Projects

Exceeding Expectations with an Uncommonly Refreshing Approach to Keep Things Flowing in Several Eastern PA Communities

  • Allen C., Utilities Excavator Operator, uses the ripper to remove crushed concrete to speed up excavation on Manor Road.

  • Clint S., Utilities Excavator Operator, uses the grading attachment on the skid loader to minimize waste of material and give the customer 5” of Temporary Blacktop.

  • Allen C. and Clint S. work simultaneously loading trucks to maximize productions in a restricted six hour window.

As one of the most historical regions in the United States, Eastern Pennsylvania has a critical need for utility infrastructure replacement today. At the same time, the area is growing — with many formerly rural communities expanding and seeking to build out utilities for residents, such as sanitary sewer service and modern water supply systems. Brubacher is honored to play an integral role in investing in these generational projects that help our communities thrive. Our Utilities Group has three substantial water and sewer projects that recently began or were just completed, which demonstrate our strong capabilities in building out utilities infrastructure.

While our team has completed many utilities infrastructure projects as part of the comprehensive site development work we perform, we also have the opportunity to execute installation and replacement projects with valued utility system operators . Our collaborations with Aqua Pennsylvania and Pennsylvania American Water Company (PAWC) offer a great snapshot of the team’s capabilities and commitment to excellence. President Keith Brubacher credits the drive and initiative of a great group of people, including Utilities Superintendent Steve L., Project Manager & Estimator Shawn B., and COO Melvin P., for building up Brubacher’s capabilities to deliver standalone utility construction services and add value in even greater ways for our communities.

“Until about 15 years ago, Brubacher did not typically undertake utilities projects beyond those directly tied to our site development projects. Today, our Utilities Group consists of seven excellent crews that consistently meet the needs of more clients in our communities. Growing and adapting this segment of our business exemplifies sustainability, and I’m proud of our people for going above and beyond to increase our capabilities for our valued partners.”  – Keith Brubacher, President

Planebrook Rd. Sanitary Sewer Installation

As part of our partnership with Aqua Pennsylvania, Brubacher has completed a wide range of utilities projects, including many water main replacements. Planebrook Road offered a unique opportunity to partner with Aqua on a sanitary sewer installation project in East Whiteland Township, Chester County, PA.

As Utilities Group team members Steve L. and Shawn B. recently pointed out, the fact that this was the inaugural project is noteworthy as a milestone in Brubacher’s history, but it is also meaningful because the team has been actively preparing for years for sewer work of this magnitude to come forward.

“Because our team has diversified in terms of workload and scope in the past few years, we were ready to hit the ground running with the right equipment and capable crews for such a large-scale sewer installation project. That has allowed us to maximize efficiencies in the ways we always do on other types of infrastructure projects. Things are progressing well, and we definitely look forward to more sewer installation work in the future.”  – Steve L., Utilities Superintendent

The total scope of this project includes installation of:

  • 8” Gravity Pipe: 5,267 LF
  • 6” Gravity Pipe: 1,180 LF
  • 4” Laterals: 55 total
  • 2” HDPE Low-Pressure Main: 2,586 LF
  • 25” Laterals: 660 LF
  • Manholes: 29 total

Before work began on this sanitary sewer installation, Brubacher’s capable utilities crews set up a staging area to receive expected materials and engaged in pre-planning efforts to mitigate risks. Our vacuum excavation equipment was deployed to accurately locate existing utilities in the area for optimal safety and efficiency as the project got underway. Project completion is planned for August 2024, and roadway paving by the Brubacher team will kick off at that time.

Manor Rd. Water Main Installation

Brubacher’s Manor Rd. water main installation project is taking place in a relatively rural part of West Brandywine Township, Chester County, PA, and our utilities team has intentionally minimized disruption to nearby homes and businesses and kept the pace and sequence of this project on schedule. The installation location and details, short project timeframes, and urgent completion requirements are project complexities our hardworking team has overcome.

Our pipe crews are working safely and efficiently under the tight timeline, as another project in the area is dependent on this one being completed first. Careful coordination with outside entities has been critical, as the main installation crosses under a vital gas transmission line and occupies a PennDOT roadway.

“We have been doubling up on crews and scheduling some Saturday work to ensure that this complex water main installation finishes on time. I am so proud of our pipe crews because we are now ahead of schedule due to their efficiency and the strong planning we put in ahead of time. The hard deadline we are working under has been motivating, and the team has taken a goal-oriented attitude toward successful on-time delivery so our partners on the upcoming projects are not kept waiting.” – Shawn B., Utilities Project Manager & Estimator

The total scope of this project includes:

  • 12” Water Main Pipe Installed: 8,500 LF
  • One Wet Tap & One Tie-In
  • Coordination with Gas Utility & PennDOT

Lafayette St. & Washington St. Water Main Replacements

Recently completed in Norristown Borough, Chester County, this water main replacement in partnership with PAWC presented several unique challenges – one of which spotlights Brubacher’s commitment to living safety as a value. The team was proud to complete the work safely and ahead of schedule earlier this year and attributes much of their success to their dedication to proper care and caution at every step.

The project is located in a dense residential area. This required careful planning to work during hours that would be the least disruptive to neighborhood residents. When we’re on a jobsite, we take seriously the fact that we are guests in the communities where we work. It’s our promise to be good communicators, great stewards of our working areas and our clients’ resources, and great neighbors to those we are working beside or around.

Given the job site location, the biggest challenge of this project was the stray electrical currents present in the water system due to its age and other factors. This meant the team had to approach the entire project as potential “hot work,” taking careful measurements with an amp reader at each service location before proceeding. The team’s experience and commitment to safety equipped every individual to be protected as all service connections were safely completed.

 The total scope of these connected projects includes:

  • 12” Water Main Pipe Installed: 4,757 LF
  • 6” & 8” Water Main Pipe Installed: 3,460 LF
  • Number of Service Connections: 322

While the complexities of these utility projects varied significantly, it was Brubacher’s consistent commitment to providing Insight. On Site. that ensured project success and true client satisfaction. Steve shared that the team’s dedication to pre-planning and being intentional about eliminating discrepancies between “real life” and the plan is key. Managing changes and communicating with clients is also significant to building solid partnerships. These are all areas where the Brubacher Utilities Group excels. Melvin added that the strong back-office support our field crews rely on is another vital component to success and contributes to the Brubacher difference in the industry.

A special shoutout to all of the Pipe Supervisors on these projects for their excellent management and leadership of the crews under their guidance: Colt G. at Planebrook Rd.; Mike S. at Manor Rd.; Mark K., Tim M. & Matt L. at the PAWC Norristown projects. Thank you for your commitment to quality and exceeding client expectations!

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