NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — Construction began on an existing 60-year-old water line along Tyndall Avenue and the flightline here in September 2010 and continues today due to more than 100 differing site conditions encountered by the contractor.
These unexpected problems have delayed project completion and increased the cost.
“This project has been a voyage of discovery, with the contractor repeatedly unearthing a labyrinth of aged and corroded utilities and hidden structural problems that added time and cost to the effort,” said Col. Barry Cornish, 99th Air Base Wing commander.
The project was contracted out because the water lines were badly deteriorated.
“Corrosion had restricted the effective pipe area so that flows and pressures were below acceptable code requirements, especially for fire protection,” said Frank Wertin, 99th Civil Engineer Squadron, chief of project management. “Most of the existing valves were no longer functional and couldn’t be closed to enable isolation of sections of lines for repair.”
The contract required the replacement of more than 20,000 linear feet of polyvinyl chloride distribution water mains, including new fire hydrants and other items. Work on the water mains had to be phased in and coordinated to allow for continued aircraft and vehicle operations, use of and access to the flightline service road and aircraft hangars and their approach aprons and to Tyndall Ave., as well as the facilities used by base personnel.
Work also included removal and replacement of trenched sections of Portland cement airfield pavement, hot mix asphalt roads and parking lots, concrete masonry unit walls, a chain link fence, and other obstacles.
“This has been perhaps the most challenging project and one with the largest physical impact of any project attempted at Nellis in the past 30 years,” Wertin said.
The work is about 80 percent complete. The contractor still needs to tie facilities to the new water system, finish installation of the main on the flightline and install permanent pavement repairs on both Tyndall Ave. and the flightline pavements. This should start within the next few weeks.
Over the next four months, most of the facilities along Tyndall Ave from the Tyndall Gate to Beale Ave will incur temporary water outages as the buildings, starting from the south end, will be tied into the new water line. Outages will be a short as possible but could be as long as 10 hours and several facilities will be affected during each outage. Specific outage times will be coordinated in advance with facility managers and they will be notified when the outage is approved so they can inform the building occupants. Port-a-potties will be placed adjacent to facilities for use during the outages.
The new contract completion date is Dec. 31.