Paw Paw water system upgrades nearly half done


photos by Steven Wright

Work on the $1.5 million Paw Paw municipal water system project has been progressing since construction began on February 19. As of Thursday, March 21, work to install new pipes and fixtures in the project area was 40% complete, said project manager Steve Buchanan of the Thrasher Group, Inc.

The northern portion of the town project is still under construction, but the contractor is making progress with the work, said Thrasher Group staff engineer Kalee Murphey. The southern portion of the town has all major water lines laid, excluding Bevans Industrial Lane.

The contractor — Pro Contracting of Lost Creek — has until about July 1 to complete the project work, Buchanan said.

Scope of work

The Paw Paw water system project is replacing around 9,500 feet of aging water lines in the town’s service area, along with replacing the valves and hydrants in areas where the water line replacements are occurring, said Buchanan previously.   Around 1,500 feet of new water line is also being added to provide two feeds to the northern section of town.

New line and fixtures should address most of the major needs of the town’s water system, he said. The Paw Paw municipal water system serves more than 240 households.

Finished areas

Murphey said in an e-mail that   Paw Paw areas that have new water line laid were:

— Dr. Randolph Spencer Lane, the 8-inch line along Apple Way up to Dawson Run

–the 2-inch line on Kathy Street

–the 6-inch line on Ambrose Street

–the 6-inch line on Winchester Street from the Ambrose intersection to the bridge

— a portion of the 6-inch line on Amelia Street

— a portion of 8-inch line on Bevans Industrial Lane

— a portion of the 8″ line on Winchester Street, starting at the Wilson Street intersection and continuing north.

That section of Winchester Street is where the two crews are currently focusing, she said.

Water line has been laid up to the Town Hall as of March 19. Murphey shared several photos of the work that’s being done that were taken by project representative Steven Wright.

Murphey said that “all valves and hydrants are being installed as the water line is installed, as this is the easiest and most practical method of installation. However, it is common to wait to complete tie-ins until the majority of lines have been laid since these are time-consuming.”

She noted that the contractor has the freedom to jump from street to street at his discretion.

“There is currently a focus on Winchester Street as this is one of the main roads within the Town and the parade will be soon. The contractor is working as fast as is practical while also maintaining strict accordance to all installation specifications,” Murphey said.


The Town of Paw Paw received full grant funding for the project through a $1.5 million Small Cities Block Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in March, 2016 to replace aging water lines and improve the water system’s reliability.

The Thrasher Group engineering firm previously evaluated the Paw Paw municipal water system, the water tank, leaky pipes, how long the pipes had been in service and areas that had significant prior leaks and repairs.

The West Virginia Development Office manages administration of the grant funds for the water project. Region 9 Planning and Development Council is providing oversight and administration of the project and also ensures that all HUD paperwork and requirements for compliance are met.