The underground utility project began in 2021 and continues through 2023 in a phased approach to replacing underground steam and water pipes across campus. From the initial phases, the University has seen increased efficiencies in the steam system, cutting the return condensate from 40% to 4% and reducing water usage overall, according to the Facilities team.
Paused during the academic semesters to minimize disruption to classes and activities, work on the underground utility project will continue through 2023, with additional digging and pipe replacement planned for the summer, along with new water hydrants. Most of the lines connect directly to daily uses, providing heating for buildings and heating domestic hot water for cooking and showers in the residence halls.
The next phase of the project will use an innovative approach or horizontal boring to minimize the open excavation where possible, but there will be areas that cross Campus Walk. Temporary pathways and path coverings will be in place.