B Street Improvements Drawing to a Close

Residents have seen shrubbery, lawns and bicycle lanes uprooted over the past four months as PG&E has worked to replace aging pipes


Petalumans living on B Street and the surrounding area will soon be able to breathe a sigh of relief as the pipeline replacement project winds to a close by early February.

Since October, PG&E crews have torn up the busy thoroughfare—from 8th Street to El Rose Drive—in order to replace aging gas distribution lines and home service lines.

The work has angered some residents, who say crews have torn up landscaping and lawns, blocked bicycle lanes and taken up parking spaces with their equipment and orange cones.

“I received only one letter from PG&E in early October announcing the work, but none of us expected it would be this comprehensive,” said resident Susan Thompson. “Work goes on well into the evening, sometimes as late as 8 p.m., and all day Saturday as well.”

Adding insult to injury, the city of Petaluma had paved B Street just three years ago, pavement that has been torn up and will now be covered with patches.

Brittany McKannay, a PG&E spokeswoman, says it would be nice if the city notified PG&E when it scheduled street paving, but it isn’t required to do so.

“It’s certainly beneficial when the city tells us so we can collaborate, but it’s not necessarily in the protocol for cities to do so.”

McKannay said PG&E will make every effort to return the area “how we found it” including fixing any uprooted lawns and shrubbery.

The work is part of ongoing improvements through PG&E’s system, replacing pipes that are more than 40 years old. Some pipes along B Street are 80 years old, creating a risk for leaks and explosions.

No other Petaluma neighborhoods have been scheduled for pipe replacement in 2013, although this may change moving forward, McKannay said.

“I certainly understand the frustration of having paving done and then having it torn up again, but this is a good and very necessary project,” she said.

Have you been impacted by the pipe replacement project on B Street?

Just G January 11, 2013 at 02:12 PM
I understand the concerns but think this is essential infrastructure that nobody wants to fail. My street was done earlier in 2012 and I am happy to have a new gas line to the house.
Bill Wolpert January 11, 2013 at 07:02 PM
Better to be inconvenienced than experience the inferno that San Bruno did.


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