Bismarck has received a $5 million loan from the state’s drinking water revolving loan fund to replace cast iron water mains in the downtown area.
The area in question is between Boulevard Avenue and Main Avenue, and Washington Street and 10th Street. The project will begin this summer, Bismarck Utility Operations Director Michelle Klose told Prairie Public.
The area also has a lot of lead service lines, according to Klose. As a part of the loan package, the state’s Department of Health and Department of Environmental Quality granted the city $500,000 to help homeowners replace those lines, she said. The program would cover up to 90% of the replacement cost.
"We will replace the line to the curb stop, as part of that project," Klose said. "But this grant program will enable the resident to replace between the curb stop and their home, so that the whole line is replaced at one point in time."
The city is preparing a package for homeowners in the area of the cast-iron replacement project. Homeowners outside that area who are interested in replacing lead service lines can get on a list, so they can benefit when more funding becomes available.
"Some of these replacements could be in the range between $5,000 and $10,000," Klose said. "It is a significant investment."
Having the 90% grant available will be important to getting the lead service lines replaced, according to Klose.
"It really provides some incentive, if the homeowner is interested," she said.
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