Concern grows over aging pipes after another water main break in Tampa

8 On Your Side

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – Crews were working overnight to fix another water main break on North Oregon Avenue in Tampa.

It’s one of hundreds of pipes that have burst this year.

The city’s aging water and sewer pipes are a big “to do” on Mayor Jane Castor’s agenda.

Tampa recently approved a new program called “PIPES” to help with the aging system.

“PIPES” or Progressive Infrastructure Plan to Ensure Sustainability was approved in September.

Since July 2017, there have been more than 2800 water main breaks.

Since May of this year, there have been over 500.

Pipes have continued to burst in Tampa since 8 On Your Side begin digging into the aging system, and how it’s impacting residents.

The plan is to renew the infrastructure, prevent breakdowns, and provide a long-term, permanent fix to the water and wastewater systems.

To fund the much-needed repairs, folks who live in Tampa will see their average water bill jump from $41 to $46.

Earlier this year, Mayor Castor said the project was long overdue.

“We have through the years we have cut we’re still recovering from the great recession and we lost over 500 employees so we have services and maintenance that has been deferred for years and we’re trying to catch up with that,” said Castor.

There will be more increases to fund the plan with gradual increases to water and wastewater rates until October 2040.

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