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Fort Wayne sewage tunnel on track despite year of challenges

(Heather Starr/WOWO News)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): Fort Wayne officials say a deep rock tunnel being built beneath Indiana’s second-largest city to catch sewage overflows is still on schedule to open in 2023 despite a year of challenges.

City Utilities official Matthew Wirtz says work on the 5-mile-long tunnel pressed ahead during 2020 despite the coronavirus pandemic, weather issues, mechanical problems with the boring machine that is drilling the tunnel, and improperly marked old pipes.

The tunnel project projected to cost $188 million is part of an agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to dramatically reduce the number of raw sewage discharges into area rivers.

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