As requested by the Gasparilla Island Bridge Authority, the Gasparilla Island Water Association temporarily relocated 98 feet of 8-inch water main on the northeast side of the South Bridge to allow Orion Construction to begin work on the temporary bridge.
Our first goal is to complete the permanent relocation of the water main on the east side of the causeway at the South Bridge. GIWA's bore contractor began the underwater bore for this water main March 17 and will be pulling the new pipe through the bore hole between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. Wednesday.
Boca Grande North's driveway on the west side of the road will be blocked during this time period. Notice was provided to Boca Grande North Tuesday.
The contractor will have equipment available to lift the pipe if necessary for anyone to leave with their vehicle. To help lessen the inconvenience to Boca Grande North residents, GIWA will have a golf cart available to transport anyone to and from the east side of the Boca Grande North Complex.
The Boca Grande Fire Department has been notified the driveway will be blocked. Once this work is complete, it will take approximately two weeks to complete the mainland portion of the work for this water main, pressure test, disinfect and complete bacteriological water tests.
Certification to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection that the water main is complete will then be hand-delivered in order to obtain approval to put the new water main in service. When the new line is in service, GIWA's contractor will then remove the existing pipe on the east side of the road.
The second water main bore should begin Wednesday and if all goes well, we should be ready to pull that pipe early next week.
Once the second bore is complete, they will then start the joint bore for GIWA's sewer main and Florida Power & Lights's electric conduits next week. This bore will take a little longer than the water mains.
As previously discussed, due to the height of the middle bridge, actual construction costs show that it is more cost-effective for GIWA to relocate its water mains at the middle bridge with underwater crossings installed by directional bores. An added benefit is that no future maintenance would be required if the water mains are supported on the bridge.
This change requires three permits and a new easement from GIBA. Two of the three permits have already been secured and we hope to receive the remaining permit within the next couple of weeks.
GIWA's attorney has prepared a new easement worded the same as the one approved by GIBA in November, with the new construction plans attached. The first easement was not recorded and GIWA is proposing to void the first easement and replace with the new easement presented to GIBA's board Tuesday.
GIWA is in hopes that the final permit will be received in time for the contractor to move to the Middle Bridge as soon as work is completed at the South Bridge. If all goes well, GIWA will be relocated at the Middle Bridge and out of Orion's way by the end of June.