Hultman Aqueduct Risk Analysis: Phase I and Phase II

Southborough, Framingham, Wayland, Natick, and Weston, MA
Key Elements
  • Evaluation of 60-year-old water pipeline
  • Resident engineering services
  • ACEC/MA Engineering Excellence Award

The Hultman Aqueduct is an 18-mile-long water pipeline that – from 1939 through 2003 when the MetroWest Water Supply Tunnel (MWWST) opened – delivered 85% of Greater Boston’s water from the Wachusett Reservoir to the Norumbega Reservoir. Once the MWWST opened, the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) had the opportunity to inspect and rehabilitate the Hultman Aqueduct to make sure it could provide redundancy for the new MWWST. 

Nitsch prepared plans, reports, and permit applications for five towns located along the Hultman Aqueduct to inform them of the anticipated excavation work relative to the evaluation of the condition of the pipeline. We prepared topographic surveys at selected areas and location surveys of exposed pipe, with at least 30 sites suspected to be leaking. Nitsch also coordinated the delineation of wetland resources and provided resident engineering to monitor and oversee the construction activities. Unique clamps were installed and repairs were made to leaks to prevent shutdown of this valuable water supply.  

This project won the “Grand Conceptor” award in the 1997 American Council of Engineering Companies/MA (ACEC/MA) Engineering Excellence Awards. 

Key Collaborators

Owner: MWRA
Design Engineer: Jacobs
Structural Inspection: Simpson Gumpertz & Heger