The first phase of a project to replace aging and damaged water lines at the Delaware County Fairgrounds has been completed.
Crews from the city of Delaware replaced more than 2,000 feet of water lines at the home of the famed Little Brown Jug in about 20 days.
“It’s been really, really well done,” said Chip Thomson, who leads the organization behind the Delaware County Fair. “The city guys have been awesome.”
The labor and equipment for the project were donated by the city, which originally estimated the cost to be about $74,000.
However, with the work completed in less than half of the originally anticipated 45 days, city spokesman Lee Yoakum said the cost will be significantly reduced.
Delaware County also contributed to the project with $55,000 toward the cost.
“We’d have never been able to do it without their help,” said Bill Lowe, the fair manager.
The water lines, which were more than 70 years old, sprang several leaks earlier this year, leading to massive water bills at the fairgrounds.
Even with the water shut off for 12 hours at night, water bills reached nearly $13,000 a month.
Typically, water bills at the fairgrounds are no more than $3,600.
“It wasn’t sustainable,” said Lowe.
Fair officials have not yet received a water bill since the repairs were completed.
“We’re sitting here on pins and needles,” said Lowe.
Phase two of the project will begin following the Delaware County Fair, which is set to take place from Sept. 19 to Sept. 26.
The city of Delaware will again donate labor for the project, which is expected to cost $36,000 and take 22 days to complete.