Tata & Howard has completed a Water System Capital Efficiency Plan™ for the City of Northampton. The plan includes a comprehensive water system master plan that evaluates the hydraulics of the system as well as critical components and asset management considerations. The hydraulic analysis included completion of fire flow testing and c-factor tests. Tata & Howard developed a hydraulic model from the City’s extensive ArcGIS database and the flow test results were used in verification. Tata & Howard reviewed recommended static pressures and Insurance Service Office recommended fire flows as well as estimated needed residential and commercial fire flows throughout the system. The Northampton water system has wide range of ground elevations, resulting in extreme high and low static pressures in some areas. To maintain recommended system pressures, a new service zone was recommended to divide the distribution system. The recommendations included a new water storage tank, pressure reducing valves and transmission main improvements. Tata & Howard also developed additional recommended water main improvements to meet fire flow needs.
The asset management portion of the project included a detailed analysis of each segment of pipe in the water system based on age, diameter, material, pressure, soil conditions, break history, and potential water hammer. Each segment of pipe was given a numeric rating based on weighted asset criteria developed in cooperation with the City. This information was used with the hydraulic evaluation and critical component assessment to determine the prioritized improvements for the system.
Tata & Howard is also assisting the City with testing of pipes throughout the system. The work includes visual evaluation of samples and pipe strength testing. An analysis of the estimated service factor of each pipe segment will be provided to the City and used to supplement the information obtained during our asset management analysis.