People in Hampstead may begin to see some new road work beginning June 1, as the first steps of the long-awaited Main Street water main replacement project get underway.
"You will see someone out there drilling some holes and doing some test drilling at the beginning of the month," Mayor Chris Nevin said. "By the end of June, there will be more excavation."
The project will remove two deficient existing water mains on either side of Hampstead's Main Street that date back to the 1930s and replace them with a single, larger pipe under the center of the street, according to Nevin.
"We will have a better, more reliable water source going forward after this process," he said. "This will also include all the laterals to the houses along Main Street and those people will be informed of the specific day they will be working on their house."
The water main replacement will begin on the north end of town and proceed in five phases — five sections of road — and the work to be completed by next June, according to Nevin. He said that at no point will traffic be entirely shut down along Main Street.
"One side of the road might be shut down, so parking may be impacted on the day that they're working, but will be posted online and on social media to give plenty of notice," Nevin said.
The town is also offering to send email updates to anyone who would like to be kept abreast of changes in the project, including days where construction might create traffic delays.
The water main project is not expected to create any major disruptions to traffic or businesses on Main Street, according to Nevin, at least not compared with the Maryland State Highway Administration's streetscape project that is scheduled to begin in the spring of 2016.
"I wouldn't call this a major disruption — I would call it an annoyance — in terms of traffic," he said. "The streetscape will be much more invasive in terms of people's daily lives."