Over the years, the technology to deliver safe and reliable natural gas to business and residential customers throughout Michigan has certainly changed. Today, a third iteration -- advanced plastic material (see photo) -- is being installed in Grosse Pointe Woods, Grosse Pointe Shores, Harper Woods and Dearborn to meet the needs of 21st Century society.
This work is a continuation the pipeline replacement program DTE launched earlier this year to ensure customers continue to have a safe and reliable natural gas infrastructure.
The five-year program involves replacing aging natural gas infrastructure – mainly cast iron mains, and steel or copper service lines that deliver natural gas from the gas mains to homes and businesses. DTE also is upgrading natural gas meters with the latest technology and relocating the equipment to the outside of homes.
"The work is important for the long-term safety and reliability of the natural gas distribution system," said Joi Harris, DTE vice president, Gas Operations. "We have served the area for several decades and in some areas more than a century. It's time for our gas infrastructure to be renewed. A smarter, up-to-date infrastructure gives customers reliability, control, flexibility and choice in how they manage their energy."
DTE is on schedule to complete 100 miles of natural gas main replacement by the end of 2016, with that workload to increase by 30 miles next year. In 2017, DTE will continue its main replacement program in Dearborn between Ford Road and Tireman, and in Grosse Pointe from Lochmoor to the Fisher Freeway. Work also will begin in Hamtramck, Highland Park and Inkster.
Throughout the process of completing this work, DTE crews have worked consciously to restore all streets, sidewalks, driveways and lawns that have been dug up to accomplish the pipe replacements. By the end of 2016, DTE will have restored 450,000 square feet of lawn to their original condition.
An operation this size has many other sizeable statistics, some of which are (all in 2016):
- 400,000 hours worked
- 19,000 meters moved and upgraded
- 7,000 cubic yards of dirt moved
- 10,000 cubic yards of concrete poured
DTE collaborates with local communities to schedule work so it complements any road or sewer projects planned in those communities.