NYAW Sunrise Highway Water Main Crossing

The hamlet of Baldwin, NY is bisected by Sunrise Highway (NYS Route 27)—a 6-lane divided highway that runs east and west along the southern length of Long Island. For Long Islanders working in the New York City metropolitan area, this critical arterial highway serves as a commuting alternative to the Long Island Expressway. The thoroughfare also plays a crucial role by mitigating congestion for the millions of Long Island business commuters and supporting local economic prosperity in the region.

D&B provided engineering services for the design and permitting of a new pipe crossing of Sunrise Highway that provides sufficient capacity to serve current and future peak water needs. The project addresses a critical need in that most of the system’s groundwater water supply and treatment facilities lie to the north Sunrise Highway and residential communities representing a significant portion of the system’s demand lie to the south.

Sunrise Highway Water Main Crossing ACEC-NY Panel

Horizontal Directional Drilling was selected to accomplish a single, large-diameter pipe crossing where Sunrise Highway intersects with Grand Avenue—the largest cross street in the area, which comprises five travel lanes, dense street parking, and local businesses. A 24-inch High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pipe maintains the hydraulic capacity of conventionally installed 20-inch ductile iron transmission main, and a 24-inch carrier pipe was installed within a 30-inch HDPE sleeve over its entire 300-foot length the protect against breakage and impacts to the roadbed.

The drilling and installation of the new pipeline were complicated by the presence of a 72-inch diameter cast iron water supply transmission pipeline within the roadbed, which was constructed in 1908 and before the roadway’s 1929 construction. The presence of this large utility required that the new borehole and pipeline geometry dive below the existing pipe, deflect and return to grade within a relatively short distance to restrict the overall length of the directional drill and pipeline length and avoid disruption of additional commercial business.

The availability and utilization of trenchless technologies were crucial in accomplishing this infrastructure improvement while maintaining continuity for local business operation and commuters. The project’s success represents a significant achievement in the application of new technologies to improve our nation’s aging infrastructure in ways that are consistent with the needs of our communities.