PSEG officials give updates on gas pipe replacement project in East Brunswick

EAST BRUNSWICK–Officials listened to PSE&G Senior Public Affairs Manager Frank Lucchesi give updates about PSE&G’s gas system replacement project in East Brunswick.

Lucchesi said that currently, PSE&G is replacing aging cast iron gas pipes with new, durable plastic and/or coated steel piping.

“If you recall we made a presentation for this gas system modernization program back in late March and the program deals with the replacement of fair steel and cast iron main that we will be doing throughout East Brunswick,” Lucchesi said. “Back in March, our presentation to introduce the program to you and talk about the streets that we were going to undertake the main replacement.”

Lucchesi said the gas main replacement is currently active, with some streets completed and other streets still being worked on.

The council learned about the latest updates regarding PSE&G’s gas system replacement project on June 10 during the council meeting.

PSE&G Project Manager Kelly Sutter said, “Just an overall project update for everyone, the overall project is about 33,000 linear feet of main install. So at this point, we are at about 31,000 that we have completed of the actual main … so we are about 90% complete with that main install. Services, we have approximately 830, we are about 50% complete with those services.”

The 830 services are the individual service from the street to the residents’ homes, so 830 residents are impacted by this upgrade, according to Sutter.

Sutter said PSE&G is actually ahead of schedule for this project.

“When we presented last time we were looking at an end of September final project closeout and right now based off the project we should be 100% complete by mid-August, pending weather we don’t really know what that is going to look like, that could be the only issue,” Kelly said. “We are able to throw a lot more resources at the project overall then originally needed.”

Continuing to work with the township and police department, Sutter said the project has been going smoothly.

“I just want to be clear for residents that there is a plan in place that’s going to review all of the roads and that [PSE&G] will be looking at some future date before [PSE&G] makes those final determinations, which roads are going to get what degree of repair,” Mayor Brad Cohen said. “So the main reason why we don’t want to publish any lists right now is because they are subject to change.”

To give residents an update about the current status of the project, Sutter said in the next week or so PSE&G will mail a letter that is specific to the residents who live on the streets where construction has been completed.

“In the letter, it just explains where we are at with the project. Construction is complete, but restoration steps are still need to take place,” Sutter said. “That is inclusive of any grass restoration, any sidewalk restoration [and] any curbing restoration, as well as, explaining our 60-90 day period and that we will be back to restore the roads once we determine the final restoration project.”

For the streets that are still under construction, Sutter said PSE&G will be sending out reverse 9-1-1 messages every four weeks to residents to update them with construction updates regarding the project.

Sutter said residents can also find out the construction status of their street by visiting PSE&G’s website.

Council Vice President James Wendall said he lives in one of the areas where the project is taking place and that PSE&G has done a great job being communicative about the project.

“The roads, you know it was a nuisance with all the traffic in the area and all the shutdowns and all of that, it seemed to be done very systemically. Although there were days where I could not figure out how to get into my house the one thing I will say is that a lot of people come to me and tell me that there is a lot of asphalt gravel still around like maybe a swinger should have went through the area.”

Sutter said PSE&G representatives recognize that, and ultimately over the next month will do a physical walk along the streets to prepare for the completion.

“My goal is to start paving the first week of August. We are probably looking at two to two-and-a-half weeks to pave with our paving contractor,” Sutter said. “They do their very best, they’re very efficient, they have been looking at the overall footage. So our goal is to start the first week in August and weather pending we would be done before school is back in session at the end of August.”

For more information about the gas pipe replacement project, visit www.bit.ly/2J8bEWd or call 1-833-661-6400.

Contact Vashti Harris at vharris@newspapermediagroup.com.