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Bismarck working to replace cast iron water mains and lead service lines

Bismarck has received a $5 million loan from the state’s drinking water revolving loan fund – to replace cast iron water mains in the downtown area.

The area in question is between Boulevard Ave. and Main Ave., and Washington St. and 10th St. Bismarck director of utility operations Michelle Klose said that project will begin this summer.

Klose said the area also has a lot of lead service lines. She said as a part of the loan package, the state’s Department of Health and Department of Environmental Quality granted the city $500,000 to help homeowners replace those lead service lines. The program would cover up to 90 percent of the replacement cost.

"We will replace the line to the curb stop, as part of that project," Klose said. "But this grant program will enable the resident to replace between the curb stop and their home, so that the whole line is replaced at one point in time."

Klose said the city is preparing a package for homeowners in the area of the cast-iron replacement project. She said homeowners outside that area who are interested in replacing lead service lines can get on a list, so they can benefit when more funding becomes available.

"Some of these replacements could be in the range between $5000 and $10,000," Klose said. "It is a significant investment."

Klose said having this 90 percent grant available will be pretty important to get those lead service lines replaced.

"It really provides some incentive, if the homeowner is interested," Klose said.