PSC completed the final two segments of the Eastside Interceptor project as a vital part of El Paso Water’s wastewater collection system. The Eastside Interceptor project better serves the needs of El Paso’s rapid growth by replacing the Mesa Drain Interceptor. The Eastside Interceptor is comprised of 36-inch to 66-inch pipe, is 15.5 miles long and maintains a large service area of 48 square miles. The Mesa Drain Interceptor is comprised of 12-inch to 60-inch pipe, is 16.25 miles long and serves an area of 37 square miles. The 2018 PSCU course “10 Pounds of Pipe in a 5-Pound Road” presented by Mike Ramirez, PE, discussed this pipeline project and the breaking down the process day-by-day to reach the overall goal.

The project included:

  • Upstream/Downstream Sections
  • Easements
  • Major Crossings
    • FM 76 (North Loop)
    • Juan de Herrera Lateral
    • Union Pacific Railway
    • Mesa Drain
    • Texas Hwy 20 (Alameda)
    • Franklin Canal
    • Socorro Lateral
  • Mesa Drain Interceptor Crossings
  • Congested right of way
  • Dewatering

Mike said large diameter pipe, congested right-of-way and 800 feet of pipe installed by tunnel boring machine (TBM) were some of the most significant components of the project. The large diameter pipe was 60 and 66-inch fiberglass pipe and was installed in a residential area where access was limited. To reduce the overall impact to residents and traffic in the neighborhood; about 800-feet of 60-inch Hobas pipe was installed using a TBM.  This reduced the overall footprint of the construction to two pits instead of trenching the whole width of the road.

There were several examples through the project where smaller strategic steps had to be taken to obtain a larger goal and to maintain safety, trust and reassurance for those involved. The importance of communication and verification on a complex project was also reinforced by Mike’s presentation. This interceptor is not the longest pipeline that PSC has designed. However, it is the complexity of this project that has earned the Eastside Interceptor recognition by El Paso Water and the El Paso community.