Work to replace pipes in Montgomery Village neighborhood to begin soon weeks after water main break

MONTGOMERY VILLAGE, Md. (FOX 5 DC) -- Nearly six weeks since a massive water main break destroyed a Montgomery County townhouse, the water company for the area says the 48-year-old pipe that burst will be replaced, but there are no plans yet for a broader pipe replacement project in the community.

The water main burst June 6 on the 9600 block of Brassie Way in Montgomery Village. Three families remain displaced, including the family whose home was destroyed.

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Saul Loza, whose home was damaged, doesn't expect to be back for months.

"It's been a lot of hassle moving from place to place and living in a hotel is not really the ideal," said Loza. "Especially, you know, I just bought this house about four or five months ago."

What's especially concerning for people in this community is there were three water main breaks the same week in June, two of them on Brassie Way.

The water company, WSSC, said a forensic study that will help determine whether a large scale pipe replacement project is necessary has been finished, but is not finalized or available for release.

A spokeswoman for WSSC said for now, 350 feet of piping would be replaced on Brassie Way where two of the breaks occurred and another 100 feet would be replaced on a nearby street where the third break happened.

There are mixed feelings about whether that's enough to make the community safe.

"It seems like they're actually doing what they need to do," said Loza.

Neighbor Julie Espina said there's continued concern among neighbors about whether this could happen again.

"It's been a month of kind of worry that something's going to happen again," she said. "That there's going to be another break and whose house might be hit next. And conversations I've had with other neighbors who are out playing with their kids, there's a lot of that sentiment in the community."

WSSC says it's determined the break was due to a cast iron pipe that was old and corroded.

Cost will be a factor in a bigger replacement project with a mile of piping costing $1.5 million, according to WSSC.