Ventura County Pipeline Route Study Project
GTS evaluated a 1.5 mile section of a 16” pipeline in rural Ventura County to determine whether an integrity assessment could be performed or if replacement is required. The section evaluated contains seven (7) unsupported catenary spans crossing several deep canyons up to 450 feet in length. After determining that neither an inline assessment nor a strength test can be conducted in a way that is both safe and cost-effective, GTS set to determining the best route through the area to replace the section of pipeline, including input from key stakeholders.
Input was gathered from all stakeholders:
- Integrity Management
- Public Affairs
The stakeholders identified several risks, including:
- Geo-technical hazards project (landslides and earthquake fault zones)
- Municipal and environmental permitting challenges
After the risks were identified, the stakeholders provided their input. The team agreed that the projects’ relatively short length made it neither practical nor cost-effective to route the line too far from its current alignment. Integrity Management and Operations required that the line be piggable with traditional ILI tools and that new pipeline spans should be avoided. Land and Environmental recommended that the existing alignment be used as much as possible to minimize the length and resultant permitting impact. Construction noted the difficult terrain and recommended that trenchless installation techniques be used where possible.
After considering input from all stakeholders, the project team settled on a route that addressed the risks and satisfied the constraints put forth by the stakeholders. The selected route intends to primarily follow the existing alignment. This route will require two (2) separate 3,000-ft horizontal drills to bore the pipeline underneath five (5) canyons. The pipeline will be rerouted around the remaining two (2) canyons.
A geotechnical study is underway to confirm the feasibility of the horizontal directional drills. Planning efforts have been ongoing since 2015 with scheduled completion date in 2024.