December 28, 2015

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SDS Wraps Up Busy 2015

The Southern Delivery System made significant progress in 2015, and construction remains on schedule to be completed in early 2016. Here’s a recap of key highlights from this year.


Local Businesses and Workers Benefitting


As SDS construction concludes in 2016, the project has delivered on commitments made that construction activity would benefit local businesses and workers. Of the $690 million in SDS spending through September 2015, $564 million benefitted businesses in Colorado and more than $353 million benefitted businesses in southern Colorado.


SDS: Completing Construction

With five years of construction under its belt, the SDS project began system testing in 2015. Activities that will run through early 2016 include running pumps at the pump stations at various rates to gauge performance, operating processes needed for water treatment, and operating the many pieces of equipment that are needed to work in concert to deliver water once construction is complete.

“We are approaching the finish line,” said John Fredell, SDS Program Director. “We are transitioning from the construction phase to testing, and into the fine-tuning phase; the end is in sight for Phase 1.”


SDS Supplies Pueblo West Water During Emergency


SDS proved its value as a regional project in July through coming to the aid of the Pueblo West Metropolitan District when the project partner discovered a break in the water line that it needs to deliver water to its 11,000 households and businesses. 


Fortunately, when the leak in the pipe was discovered on July 15, Pueblo West’s new 36-inch pipeline and the new North Outlet Works – both constructed in association with SDS -- were complete and in operable condition.


As Pueblo West worked hard to repair the leaky pipe, its staff turned on its new valve to send water (see photo above) to the Pueblo West pump station, to the water treatment plant and then to customers.


Pueblo County Commissioner Terry Hart was quoted in the Pueblo Chieftain stating, "This emergency project demonstrates the wisdom of Pueblo West government planners to put in a redundant water delivery system for their community. …And I want to thank Colorado Springs Utilities and the Bureau of Reclamation for their willingness to step up to the plate and make this happen quickly.”

SDS Concluded 50 Miles of Pipeline Construction

Community leaders, contractors and partner communities celebrated the end of pipeline construction in March at a site adjacent to a recently completed pipe-tunneling project. See pipeline event video.

Approximately 7,000 50-foot sections of mostly 66-inch diameter, welded-steel blue pipe were installed over the past 3.5 years in El Paso and Pueblo counties. The conclusion of pipeline construction brings this $825 million project – including $204 million of that spent on pipe and installation – one step closer to delivering water next year.
The three prime contractors for SDS utilized more than 100 Colorado businesses for pipeline construction.


For the latest updates, a monthly progress report is available online at




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