NJNG Pipe-Laying Project in Water Off West Creek to Wrap Up By Memorial Day

By VICTORIA FORD | May 08, 2019
File Photo by: Ryan Morrill

Eagleswood — New Jersey Natural Gas’ Long Beach Island Reinforcement Project is underway in West Creek, and despite an unexpected delay last month, work is on schedule to finish up by Memorial Day.

The plan is to run 2.72 miles of 12-inch steel pipe as a secondary natural gas line under Little Egg Harbor from the end of Dock Road in West Creek to West 99th Street (Alabama Avenue) in Beach Haven Park to supply Long Beach Island in the next superstorm.

Work on the LBI side of the harbor will not begin until the fall.

The pipe is being laid by way of directional boring or horizontal directional drilling, a steerable, trenchless method of installing underground pipe, conduit or cable in a shallow arc along a prescribed bore path by using a surface-launched drilling rig and said to have minimal impact on the surrounding area. NJNG will drill a bore path in both directions to meet at a barge in the middle, according to Supervising Engineer Joe Puglisi. Then workers will ream out the pipe and enlarge it in preparation to lay the gas-carrying pipe.

Workers faced an unforeseen challenge when they showed up on a Monday morning and discovered that while the work of drilling a borehole was paused over the rainy weekend, the drill head in the ground had sunken below the borehole, Puglisi explained.

NJNG would not offer any specifics about how the pipe ultimately was freed.

“The drill issue we had experienced has been fully resolved,” according to NJNG spokesman Kevin Roberts. This issue itself, however, remains a mystery. “At this time, we aren’t further detailing the process.”

“The 24-hour drilling phase of the project is beginning in the coming days,” Roberts added. “The drilling operations on Dock Road are on track to be completed, with all equipment removed, by Memorial Day.”

The work, concentrated on a piece of township-owned parkland known as “the pavilion” at the end of Dock Road, disturbs .02 acres (of the total 29,000-square-foot area) for a permanent subsurface NJNG easement.

“Throughout the process, NJNG has been working with all property owners on Dock Road to address their concerns and communicate the latest information. That will remain the case as we look to conclude the drilling work and any wrap-up activities.”  —V.F.


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