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Work on east Medford pipelines is giving us gas

I have had it driving on Delta Waters Road trying to dodge large metal plates in the road and raised manhole covers. It is a front-end alignment nightmare. What is going on, and when will it be finished?

— Steve S., Medford

We can feel your pain, Steve. But, as the old saying goes, no pain, no gain.

Delta Waters is being dug up as part of a bigger project that will allow Avista Utilities to upgrade its gas lines for current and future needs. That's why you're seeing the equipment and stacked pipes at various locations in east Medford.

“We’re doing a lot of work, and we’re trying to get it done as quick as we can,” said Steve Vincent, Oregon regional business manager for Avista. “We appreciate everybody’s patience.”

First the good news, Steve: The section of Delta Waters that Avista’s contractor is working on should be wrapped up in about two weeks. The bad news: The section of Delta Waters from Tahitian to Crater Lake Avenue will have to be dug up next, and the work should last about two months, according to Vincent. (There’re way too many Steves in the world, don’t you guys agree?).

Vincent said Avista is upgrading its 4-inch lines to 6 inches on Delta Waters. A similar project is under way on Springbrook Avenue.

Avista has needed a main line on the east side of Medford for a long time, Vincent said. Currently it has a 6-inch line running on the west side of the valley. The new lines will also connect two major lines that come into the Medford area from Grants Pass and Klamath Falls.

So take heart, Steve (and we’re not referring to Steve Vincent), in a couple of months this will all be a bad memory, and east Medford will have gas lines with the capacity to satisfy current and future customers.

—Send questions to “Since You Asked,” Mail Tribune Newsroom, P.O. Box 1108, Medford, OR 97501; by fax to 541-776-4376; or by email to youasked@mailtribune.com. To see a collection of columns, go to mailtribune.com/youasked. We’re sorry, but the volume of questions received prevents us from answering all of them.