WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senators Tom Carper and Chris Coons and Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester (all D-Del.) today announced an award of $3,060,000 from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for the City of Wilmington to rehabilitate and repair portions of its aging sewer infrastructure.
“In May 2022, I hosted EPA Administrator Regan in Delaware to show him some of our wastewater systems in great need of federal funding. Today, I am pleased that EPA is investing in projects all over the country — including in Wilmington — to repair our aging infrastructure,” said Senator Carper, Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. “Thanks to the congressionally directed spending process and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the City of Wilmington is going to be able to upgrade its wastewater and sewer system in a way that makes the city more resilient to climate change. When completed, these upgrades will help prevent flooding and preserve the integrity of surrounding bodies of water, including the Brandywine River.”
“As someone who started my public service career in local government, I know how important it is to maintain our critical public works infrastructure,” said Senator Coons. “As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, I am pleased to have secured these funds that will help the City of Wilmington upgrade its water systems. This investment will ensure that Wilmington is equipped to grow and thrive for decades to come.”
“Resilient wastewater infrastructure plays an important role in keeping our communities and environment healthy,” said Rep. Blunt Rochester, a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. “Today’s investment from the EPA will help repair the aging wastewater infrastructure in the City of Wilmington – extending its durability to last another 50 years – and will help reduce flooding, enhance quality of life, and strengthen economic development as well.”
“I join with Wilmington’s Public Works Commissioner Kelly Williams in thanking President Biden, Senators Carper and Coons, and Representative Blunt Rochester for enabling us to address a critical sewer system need in the Prices Run area of the City,” said Mayor Mike Purzycki. “This interceptor project will improve the combined stormwater and sewer infrastructure that was originally built in the early 1900s. The focus of the Biden Administration is on important infrastructure needs in disadvantaged areas around the nation, and this award is a perfect example of meeting local needs. Our Public Works Department will now be able to reduce localized flooding while extending the life of the Prices Run infrastructure system by another half-century.”
Under the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023, Congress appropriated resources for 715 congressionally directed water infrastructure projects (EPA Community Grants) totaling $1.47 billion. Senators Carper and Coons and Congresswoman Blunt Rochester all supported this project.
The City of Wilmington will use the grant to rehabilitate and repair approximately a mile-and-a-half of combined sewer main constructed of concrete or brick pipe in the early 1900s. The modifications will decrease the potential for localized flooding and improve flow control. Additionally, the repairs are anticipated to extend the life of the pipeline by another 50 years.
The project area will extend from West 28th Street between North Jefferson Street and Jessup Street, continue on Jessup Street between West 28th Street and East 26th Street, and then continue on East 26th Street between Jessup Street and North Locust Street before extending to the Brandywine River.