Surface Water Transmission Program (SWTP) 72-inch Water Line from Emancipation to Tuam – Houston Public Works

Houston, Texas

Houston Public Works Surface Water Transmission Program (SWTP) is a $660 million program initiated in 1985 to transition the City’s water supply from groundwater to surface water to mitigate subsidence and create a more resilient water transmission system. Since the program began, LAN has supported the City in various roles including Technical Advisor for the award-winning 72-inch Water Line from Emancipation to Tuam. The completion of this project was significant milestone in achieving the City’s goals to improve redundancy and reliability within its water transmission system.

The SWTP 72-inch Water Line is the first segment in a series of four that will serve as a refill line to the Southwest Pump Station, increasing its capacity for the western half of the City’s water system. The project begins at the intersection of Emancipation at Polk St. in East Downtown and ends at the intersection of Tuam and Crawford in Midtown.

With a total of over 7,800 linear feet, the scope of the project included full roadway reconstruction, drainage improvements, traffic signalization improvements, street lighting improvements, and sidewalk improvements. One of the most notable challenges was the 874-ft long, 79-ft deep, 96-inch diameter large diameter tunnel across US59, one of the deepest large diameter tunnels ever built in the greater Houston area.

The project also included a condition assessment and rehabilitation of an existing 60-inch water line, known as the North 60. LAN performed manned entry visual inspection and oversaw an electromagnetic survey for the aging prestressed concrete cylinder pipe to identify areas of distress which were reinforced by interior carbon fiber repairs.

At a glance

72-inch large diameter water line

7,800+ linear feet

Recipient of Texas APWA Project of the Year Award (Environment)


One of the deepest large diameter tunnels built in the greater Houston area

Improved redundancy and reliability within Houston’s water transmission system

Performed a condition assessment and rehabilitation to existing aging infrastructure





Houston Public Works

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