Anoka to finish water meter replacement

Work will go ahead on the replacement of over 2,454 residential water meters in Anoka.

The Anoka City Council approved a bid for $480,931 from Kentrel Corporation to provide and install the water meters and upgrade older meters that were installed 10 to 15 years ago and could experience battery failure.

According to Public Works Superintendent Mark Anderson, the replacement of these nearly 2,500 units will mean all the residential meters in the city will be capable of being radio-read.

This allows meter readers to drive-by to get the data, rather than entering customers’ homes.

“It saves a lot of money in the long run,” said Anderson for both the city and the customers. “These meters offer a lot more advantages beyond just labor savings.”

The new meters are more accurate and can monitor flow, which could save a homeowner costs associated with a leak.

It was a project that was started 15 years ago and will finally be completed this year. The city has 4,470 residential water meters.

Anoka had planned to complete the project last year, but the council rejected bids in December due to cost and possibly a misinterpretation of what the project included, said Anderson.

Councilmember Jeff Weaver said he was concerned about the financial strain this could put on seniors or families that might not be able to afford improvements that potentially could be needed to old and brittle galvanized water lines in order for a new meter to be installed. Homeowners are responsible for having the lines capable of handling the new meters.

Anderson said the city will work with homeowners with aging water systems that may need to be upgraded with the installation of new meters and there is typically a small number of people who would require additional work to water lines.

Mandy Moran Froemming is at [email protected]