08 September 2016

Coffee with Tony Conn—Equal Parts Confidence & Caffeine

Posted in Industry News

By: Don Rigby

Every time I speak with Tony Conn - City of Naperville Collection and Pumping Supervisor -  my grout first beliefs are validated.  It was casual phone conversation and my coffee cup was full, but it was Tony that was energized, confident, and firm in his convictions about municipal grouting. 

In the spirit of WHAT’S NEXT, a theme for the documentary webcast scheduled for 9/22 with Trenchless Technology - Re-Living 50 Years of Municipal Sewer Grouting and WHAT’S NEXT - I asked Tony Conn what’s next for the City of Naperville, IL?  I’ll simplify and summarize with the following bullet items:

 •    Beginning in January 2017, all CIPP Lining projects require mainline grouting first. Tony just added this line item to the CIPP bid spec. His reasoning is clear—when lining is required, grout first makes lining possible and a more durable solution.
•    Going forward, lateral grouting is now a three-step process thanks to the city-installed clean-outs:

o    Step 1:  Mainline-lateral connection—grouted with remote packer from the mainline
o    Step 2:  Mainline to clean-out—from the clean-out to mainline with push-packer
o    Step 3:  Clean-out to Foundation—from the clean-out to home/business foundation with push-packer. 

•    Manhole rehab for the City of Naperville follows the prescribed three-step process as outlined in Avanti’s webinar on July 27th - Engineer, Owner, Contractor: Know Your Role to Optimize Manhole Rehabilitation.

o    Step 1:  Grout first to stop active leaks using AvantiGrout
o    Step 2:  Prepare surface with Strong-Seal cement coating
o    Step 3:  Epoxy Liner using Raven 405 (applied at 250 mil)

Quick Story with Happy Ending:  In the center of Downtown Naperville, a brick manhole failed. As opposed to disrupting the busiest intersection for weeks, in just three short days with crews working overnight applying the above three-step process, the emergency project was 110% successful. Citizens never knew there was a problem, but Tony Conn knows the city saved $80K and tons of grief by rehabbing vs. replacing. The images below show before and after shots of the rehabbed manhole.

You might call this an Overnight Success. I call it a smart Conn Job. There are other grouting heroes in similar roles and responsibilities.  Tony Conn just happens to be out-spoken and well-known and proud to usher in the New Grout Economy.

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