PIONEERTOWN — The pipeline project bringing Hi-Desert Water District water into Pioneertown is almost done, after a delay in supplies pushed back the project completion date from June 30 to the end of July.
The County Service Area 70 project began last year thanks to a $5.4 million grant from the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund. The new pipeline will replace the source water in Pioneertown, connecting it to the Hi-Desert Water District with the installation of approximately 4 miles of pipeline and two booster stations.
Pioneertown has been facing water quality issues for several years and, after years of local lobbying for reliable drinking water, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a mandate that pushed this project forward.
It will serve approximately 120 meters.
Over the past few months, county Special Districts Department staff and the contractor for the project, Sukut Construction, have been installing the new piping.
“We are happy to report that the contractor has installed and tested the entire pipeline and reservoir tanks using temporary pumps and power sources,” the Special District Department announced in a released statement. “All elements passed the pressure, bacteriological and contaminant tests with no issues.”
The pump station has not been completed but, once it is, the Special District Department said each site will be powered up and tested with monitoring systems to make sure everything is running correctly.
“This pump station is needed to pump up into Pioneertown,” said Steve Bardwell, Pioneertown’s representative on the Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council.
“It is expected to be completed July 25 with early August being the turn-on.”
The team also plans to finish grading the sites, repave the affected road portions and install security fencing.
“The project is coming along,” Bardwell said. “The residents are excited for the first turn-on.”
The special district that provides Pioneertown with water was formed in 1980 and inherited nine wells with tanks and pipes. Five of the wells are inactive due to extremely high levels of uranium and arsenic.