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Public Works will replace several pipes near West Baltimore’s Poe Homes after June’s weeklong water outage

Public Works will replace several pipes near West Baltimore’s Poe Homes after June’s weeklong water outage
Workers address the water outage at Poe Homes in West Baltimore June 21. The city's Department of Public Works announced Wednesday that it plans to replace pipes in the area due to continued water pressure issues. (Karl Merton Ferron / Baltimore Sun)

After a water main break left residents of the Poe Homes public housing complex without water for more than a week earlier this summer, officials have announced pipe upgrades in the area.

All but one of the water mains servicing the area are still operating at “lower than acceptable” pressure after the repairs that followed the June 17 water main break, according to a Department of Public Works news release.

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So the department plans to replace the pipes, some of which date to the 1910s and 1920s, with larger ones over the next three months, according to the release.

The work will “result in better water pressure and more reliable service for hundreds of homes and businesses in the area,” the release stated. It will be done in phases, so as to minimize water disruptions, and will affect the following areas:

  • Saratoga Street between Schroeder Street and Freemont Avenue
  • Lexington Street between Schroeder Street and Freemont Avenue
  • North Amity between Saratoga Street and Lexington Street
  • Fremont Avenue between Mulberry Street and Baltimore Street

Residents of affected properties will be notified with utility work notices, and aboveground water bypass lines will be installed during maintenance work to allow for continued water service whenever possible, according to the release.

Back in June, even after running water was restored, it often emerged from the pipes at a trickle. Pressure was so low that the city housing authority opted to spend nearly $200,000 to remove newly installed high-efficiency toilets, which would no longer flush, and replace them with normal ones.

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