City of Fairfax Answers: Fairfax Water Tank at George Mason University (Updated)
UPDATE (September 2018): Fairfax Water has delayed the start of this project as it works with George Mason University to evaluate any environmental issues that may result from removal of the tank. The delay is not expected to last long, and we will update city residents when the project resumes.
As some of you may have heard, Fairfax Water is going to replace the water tank on the campus of George Mason University.
Here’s a quick overview of the project and answers to some questions you might have.
Q: Why is a new tank being constructed?
A: Fairfax Water is upgrading the tank (pictured, below) to provide improved delivery pressure and fire protection to its customers in and around the campus. This includes most of the City of Fairfax south of Route 236/Main Street.
Q: Is the new tank taller and bigger?
A: Yes, the new tank will be 155 feet high (about 50 feet taller than the current tank) and will hold 2.5 million gallons of water.
Q: Where is the tank located?
A: The tank is located on Patriot Circle, not far from the University Drive/George Mason Boulevard entrance.
Q: When will demolition and construction begin, and how long will the work last?
A: Work will begin in early September 2018 and will last approximately 20 months. The targeted completion date is February 2020.
Q: Will the work be contained to the University campus and not infringe on nearby neighborhoods?
A: Yes, the work will be contained to the campus, as Fairfax Water has worked very closely with the university and the city on logistics to ensure the lowest possible impact on students and faculty and, in the case of Fairfax City, Green Acres and the neighborhoods along Sideburn Road.
Q: What about parking and noise? How have those issues been addressed?
A: First, parking: Similar to other construction projects on campus, the contractor can buy permits for West Campus or the Field House or use offsite parking facilities and shuttle their employees to the tank site.
Fairfax Water will work with the contractor to ensure that there is no construction-related parking along Sideburn Road, in the adjoining neighborhoods, or in Green Acres lots.
Regarding noise: Fairfax Water will adhere to the university and city’s noise ordinances. Hours of construction: 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays; 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturdays; no work on Sundays except for emergencies. (There might be some night work, but only rarely).
Q: During construction, will there be any discoloration in my water or a decrease in water pressure?
A: Fairfax Water customers shouldn’t notice any discoloration or change in water pressure. However, if you do experience either, you should contact Fairfax Water at 703-698-5800.
Q: Where will construction equipment be parked when not in use, and how will the crew transport construction debris away from the site?
A: Construction equipment will be parked at the tank site, and all construction debris will be hauled offsite during tank demolition.
Q: Will construction trucks use Sideburn Road?
A: Fairfax Water’s team doesn’t anticipate construction equipment or trucks using Sideburn Road, because it’s a dead end. However, if you have any concerns about construction traffic on Sideburn, please reach out via email on the project website (listed below).
Q: How do I get updates about the progress of this project?
A: Fairfax Water will update this project website regularly. Click here to visit the project web page.