The Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve and Ecological Reserve represent approximately 1,000 acres of open space. The Nature Preserve is made up of the bluffs surrounding the Bay. Sensitive bird and plant species use the bay and bluffs. This coastal wetland is one of the largest in Southern California and is renowned as one of the finest bird watching sites in North America.


During winter migration up to 35,000 birds may be using the Bay at one time. It is home to six rare or endangered species of birds. Considered a “critical estuary” habitat – Upper Newport Bay is one of the most pristine remaining estuaries in Southern California.


An apartment and townhome community is located on 55 acres above the cliffs. This community has lush landscaping and apartment homes built on the bluffs above Newport’s beautiful Back Bay and have mile-wide views of the Bay, Newport Harbor, and the blue Pacific Ocean.


The owners of the property noticed the cliff starting to fail due to a leaking corrugated metal storm drain on the property. This project required quick action and a small footprint to repair the pipe that was causing the cliffs to fail and jeopardize the apartment homes built with multimillion dollar views from the cliffs above.


Performance Pipeline Technologies of Huntington Beach California, a full-service union contractor specializing in cleaning, inspection, and trenchless pipeline rehabilitation, was contacted to access the failing storm drain pipeline and provide a solution for the problem.


Newport lining


Project Challenges


The project has several unique challenges to it. The storm drain was located in a courtyard area that was only accessible through an underground garage and the pipe is 15 ft deep. Other challenges include that the catch basin access points were only 24-in. square structures, the pipe ran under concrete slabs, expensive lush landscaping, building foundations and through two additional catch basins. There was also a 45-degree elbow mid-way in the run where the pipe turned down going steeply down the cliff, with a 100-ft drop to the outlet at the base of the cliffs. Equipment access was only available from the upstream side; the downstream side was in the environmental controlled area at the base of the cliff.


Performance Pipeline Technologies has equipped itself with many specialized pieces of equipment to work in standard and unique easement applications to provide the most cost-effective solutions for challenging applications like this project. The equipment included truck-mounted Vector 2000i 15-yard Combination trucks, more compact Vactor Ram Jets, and smaller 4,000-psi, high-pressure, low-volume sewer cleaners.


The team has a wide selection of nozzles for specialty cleaning problems for each unit. CCTV inspection equipment includes CUES, SUBSITE/RST, and Envirosight Systems. The camera transport tractor systems include steerable 4 WD with the capability of telescoping up to 200 ft. Other equipment included: self-propelled, robotic-controlled milling machines; refrigerated liner transportation such as large, lower height mid-size trucks, and narrow vans for working in the narrow City of Los Angeles Hollywood Hills Streets. Finally, also used were small and large diameter SHOOTERS – CIPP inversion units, Tier 4 AQMD permitted air compressors, and portable boiler units for curing CIPP liners, and computer-controlled UV curing systems. Performance also has the specialized equipment and experience to clean and line AC Asbestos Cement pipelines to comply with the federal and state regulations.


Performance recently updated its old style CIPP shooters with the latest version of the of the Shooters manufactured by Emagineered Solutions of Redmond, Oregon. The smaller portable hand truck style version is capable of 6-to-12-in. installations and the larger trailer-mounted version is capable of 15-to-24-in. installations and with the addition of adapters that Performance purchased it can also install the smaller 6- to 12-in. liners.



Performance Pipeline Technologies crews are trained and certified installers of several different manufacturers of standard CIPP & UV-cured both full length and spot repairs, PVC and HDPE sectional slip liners, Primus slip liner system for sewer force main, potable water, and industrial pressure applications, and SewperCoat calcium aluminate concrete, pipe and manhole lining. The crews are NASSCO-CIPP, PAPC and MACP Certified.


Performance Pipeline Technologies president Gene Glassburner stated that all underground construction contractors are concerned with keeping their costs down and boosting productivity.


“For this application, we chose to use our standard CIPP liner installed with its trailer-mounted Shooter capable of installing the 24-in. CIPP pipe liner. Our liner material supplier worked with us to expedite the production of the liner materials. Our lower profile refrigerated truck and the portable boiler units were used to get access to the installation site through the garage area. Our low noise AQMD certified air compressor was used so we did not disturb the residents. The entire project was completed in one day,” Glassburner said.


Like the Boy Scout motto “Be Prepared,” if contractors invest in the state-of-the-art equipment, employee technical and safety training & certifications, and maintain good close relationships with your material suppliers you will be prepared to act quickly for emergency projects.



Dave Badgley is marketing and technical support at Performance Pipeline Technologies and Badgley & Associates.



See Discussion, Leave A Comment