Colorado Springs Utilities tackling a pricey problem because of the recent rains and the Waldo Canyon Fire. Photo-Journalist Dennison Howard and I got a tour of the area near the Nichols Reservoir. A backup water pipeline is exposed for about a mile. The naked infrastructure was covered with concrete and dirt. That covering has been washed away because of last week's rain storm. The Waldo Canyon Fire caused some serious erosion problems in the area near the pipeline.
Colorado Springs Utilities, Field Operations Manager Andy Funchess told us, "None of this road, none of this damage was here before. Everything before was a nice clean road." He was even shocked by the damage. This area is in steep rough terrain. The price tag to fix it could be a million dollars plus. Some of the money could come from other projects that would be put on hold. The source of the rest of the money is still a question mark.
Funchess says there's no firm timetable to get this backup pipeline online until the plans are drawn up and approved. Springs Utilities also reinforced that there is no panic for water usage because this pipeline is off line. Remember, this is a backup line to the primary that feeds water to Utilities customers.