Construction projects in Ardmore reveal old infrastructure not found on any maps or data bases, causing delays for workers and costing the city money.
Ardmore Public Utilities Director Shawn Geurin said most of Ardmore’s old infrastructure is in the older parts of Ardmore and downtown area, where the city is currently working on the multi-million dollar Streetscape project.
“So it’s pretty common for us to be digging in certain areas of town, especially older parts of town, and digging up this old infrastructure,” Geurin said.
In any case, revealing old, obscure utility lines can back things off if the city or service organizations can’t distinguish them.
Geurin said it is common for old infrastructure, such as pipes, to be left in the ground and the new pipes placed beside them.
Geurin said the movement and loss of maps and records over the years have made locating older infrastructure difficult.
Assistant City Manager Kevin Boatright, who oversees the Streetscape project, said sometimes the older maps are incorrect, showing utility lines in the wrong places and causing delays as well. .
The city puts any new disclosures into an data collection system, alongside the city’s current utility lines like water and sewer.
Geurin said the data collection system his helpful for repairing any issues as well, such as water line breaks.
“We’re able to pull up a map and look at where the valves are so we can go out and shut those valves off to isolate that water line break,” Geurin said.
Geurin said keeping and updating this data base will make the jobs of future city officials easier when it comes to construction.
“For whoever comes in behind us, 10, 20, 30 years down the road, they’ll be able to look at it and at least say ‘Oh, we know what that is. These guys left it in the maps.’ So, we have a trail to it now,” Geurin said.