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MISSION VIEJO : South County Water Pipeline Completed

The last piece in a 24.7-mile pipeline that will provide South County with a backup water supply system has been set in place.

Although it will be next spring before the entire South County area is serviced by the $110-million pipeline, the last section was installed Friday at Oso Parkway in Rancho Mission Viejo, three years after the first section was laid in El Toro.

Customers from Lake Forest to Mission Viejo now are getting water from previously installed sections of the project. Pump stations and smaller, connecting pipelines are scheduled to be installed in San Clemente this spring.

Previously, only one major pipeline serviced South County, making water service earthquake-vulnerable.

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“This will serve as a backup system in the event of a major catastrophe,” said Julia Kelly, spokeswoman for the Santa Margarita Water District. The district is part of a consortium of water companies and developers that built the pipeline. “This was really needed in South County. The old pipeline was approaching 20 years old.”

The new line connects with Metropolitan Water District lines near El Toro. During the next several years, connector pipes will be installed by South County water districts to serve the entire area.


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