110 W. New York Ave.
DeLand, FL 32720
By Pat Andrews
posted Feb 20, 2013 - 7:05:02am
As cities go, DeBary is young. The city will celebrate its 20th year of incorporation in December.
Much of DeBary’s infrastructure, however, is much older. Many of its pipes and drains were installed 30, 40 or 50 years ago. The problem of aging infrastructure is what DeBary’s new Public Works Department is working on.
“We don’t have the manpower or equipment to do a lot of the heavier stormwater projects or infrastructure repairs,” Williamson said.
Williamson expects the fledgling department to grow, if the City Council approves.
In the meantime, the department has taken on a number of small projects, which Williamson talked about at the City Council meeting Feb. 6.
The Public Works crew inspected the city’s infrastructure, and found decaying underground stormwater and wastewater pipes that have been in place much longer than their anticipated life.
The crew recorded 1,084 curb inlets, 818 ditch-bottom inlets and 232 grate-top inlets, along with 58.4 miles of culverts, 9.7 miles of force main, 27.9 miles of open channel, and 4.1 miles of dry line, for example.
“Decades of exposure to corrosion, rust and erosion are now causing many of them to weaken and fail,” Williamson told City Council members.
The crew has been replacing collapsed culverts and broken concrete, and clearing grass, weeds, dirt and debris from overgrown storm grates.
Repairs and replacement of some underground pipes will have to be contracted out.
City Council members said they are pleased that DeBary Public Works has come on strong.
“It’s about ownership; you take ownership in your house,” Vice Mayor Chris Carson said, adding that that’s what Williamson and his crew have done.
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