Elyria, OH, Joins Cast Iron Pipe Century Club

10 July 2024

The Ductile Iron Pipe Research Association (DIPRA) welcomes the city of Elyria, OH, to the Century Club, which honors the strength, longevity, and resilience of cast iron pipes used in water infrastructure projects.

"More than 100 years ago, professional engineers and municipal leaders recognized the need to create systems to deliver clean, safe drinking water," said DIPRA President David Cole. "Those first water utilities understood how critical it was to select the best materials to convey that water, and the choice then to utilize cast iron set a professional standard for high-quality pipes that would withstand the test of time – and the rigors of nature. We welcome Elyria, OH, into the Century Club for their smart decision-making 100 years ago, and we congratulate today's leaders for their use of modern Ductile iron, which is the descendant of cast iron."

The value of choosing long-lasting, resilient pipe materials cannot be overstated: the pipes that run underneath cities are the foundations on which safe societies are built. Cast iron pipes established a high benchmark for excellence in providing clean, safer drinking water. Today's Ductile iron continues that work, and the manufacturers of modern Ductile iron pipe have accepted the challenge to make iron pipe even better – the performance, resilience, ease of installation, strength, and longevity of Ductile iron pipe is second to none.

The city of Elyria first installed cast iron in 1902, including the pipe that is being celebrated for induction in the Century Club. That 20-inch pipe ran nearly four miles from the city's water plant on Lake Erie to the city's limits.

"The best thing about cast iron is its ability to withstand the many forces exerted on drinking water pipes," said Dave Rothgery, Elyria's water operations manager. "The selection of water mains is sometimes easier than one would think. For us, the switch from cast iron to Ductile iron was a natural progression from one superior, long-lasting resilient pipe to another. Ductile iron is hands-down the best drinking water pipe available today."

Research has shown that utilities that upgrade from cast iron to Ductile iron experience fewer repairs and lower pumping costs, which saves money for residents and businesses. While other pipe materials may cost less upfront, the maintenance and repair costs associated with inferior pipes makes the long-term price of those pipes exponentially more expensive over time.

Rothgery said the city's 20-inch cast iron main may be installed in the water plant's museum to honor its longevity.

The Cast Iron Pipe Century Club was organized in 1947 to publicly recognize water utilities with Cast Iron mains that have provided service for 100 years or more. There are more than 550 water utilities in the United States and 35 water utilities in Canada that are members of DIPRA's Century Club. Many of these utilities are all still using at least some of the cast iron pipes installed underground more than 100 years ago. DIPRA also sponsors a Sesquicentennial Club, of which 27 utilities in the U.S. and five in Canada are known to have enjoyed cast iron pipelines in service for more than 150 years.

Source: prnewswire.com