Real Estate Inc.D.C. Water completes First Street Tunnel, with flood relief for Bloomingdale, LeDroit Park residents
Dec 23, 2015, 2:45pm EST
Daniel J. Sernovitz, Staff Reporter
Washington Business Journal
Taking five months to travel 2,700 feet might seem like an excruciatingly slow journey, tantamount to taking a trip during peak travel times via I-95 for the holidays, but it's actually cause for celebration at the D.C. Water and Sewer Authority.
The journey took place roughly 100 feet below ground, and the traveler was Lucy, a 1,582-ton tunnel boring machine named in honor of Lucy Diggs Slowe, the first dean of women at Howard University. She is one of the leading ladies in D.C. Water 's $2.6 billion D.C. Clean Rivers Project, which I highlighted back in February before Lucy was christened and lowered underground to dig the first of 500 million pounds of sand, silt and clay beneath First Street.
It might not seem all that glamorous, but the initiative is a key part of D.C.'s future; ensuring D.C. Water has the capacity to handle additional development projects in the future, keeping sewage water out of the Anacostia and Potomac rivers, and providing relief to flood-prone neighborhoods like Bloomingdale and LeDroit Park. Lucy's First Street Tunnel will be a vital link in a 13-mile system expected to take some two decades to complete.