Cobbs Hill Reservoir Structural and Mechanical Maintenance Project

Aerial View of Cobbs Hill Reservoir About the Project

The City is implementing various structural and mechanical repairs to the Cobbs Hill reservoir facility to help extend the life of the facility and improve the reliability and functionality of the facility. Cobbs Hill reservoir is located near the intersection of Monroe Avenue and Highland Avenue in the City of Rochester, NY. The reservoir was originally constructed in 1908. The reservoir has a capacity to store 144 million gallons of finished drinking water. Water treated at the city’s Hemlock Water Filtration Plant is conveyed to the reservoir via large diameter conduits that range in size from 36” to 42” in diameter. The reservoir is constructed with approximately 3560 feet of concrete retaining wall that act as a perimeter to the reservoir. The concrete wall is 23-feet in height. The floor of the reservoir is constructed with unreinforced slab-on-grade concrete. In 1985 Cobbs Hill reservoir underwent an extensive structural rehabilitation including shotcrete repairs to the face of the concrete embankment retaining walls of the reservoir.

Repairs and modifications that will be performed as part of this include:

  • Replacement of the Upper Gate Portico Floor;
  • Perform topside concrete spot repairs and joint sealant repairs to the top of the perimeter reservoir retaining wall;
  • Pipe Gallery concrete repairs to the ceiling and filling a portion of the Pipe Gallery with low-strength concrete;
  • Improved personnel access into the Pipe Gallery;
  • Repointing exterior masonry joints on the Fountain structure and coating the Fountain roof;
  • Water proofing and other modifications to the Screening Well;
  • Replacement of a portion of the inlet pipe that previously failed;
  • Replacement of the Fountain control valve;
  • Inspection and rehabilitation of the existing sluice gates in the Upper Gate House;
  • Replacement of the chemical supply lines between the Chemical Building and the Upper Gate House;
  • Installation of a 2” water line and spare electrical duct from the Lower Gate House to the Upper Gate House;
  • Other modifications include electrical upgrades, plumbing modifications, and replacement of an inefficient furnace with a modern gas-fired furnace in the Upper Gate House.

 Cobbs Hill Reservoir Upper Gate House Design and construction management services are provided by the City’s engineering consultant, Arcadis, 510 Clinton Square, Rochester, NY 14604.

The city has awarded the following construction contracts as part of this project:

  • General Construction, C. P. Ward, Inc., Scottsville, NY
  • HVAC, Crosby Brownlie, Inc., Rochester, NY 
  • Plumbing, Crosby Brownlie, Inc., Rochester, NY 
  • Electrical, Hewitt Young Electric, LLC., Rochester, NY

Project Timeline (approximate)

  1. Drain reservoir: June 2014
  2. Contractor’s Notice-to-Proceed (approximate): July 2014
  3. Concrete repairs to Portico Floor, Pipe gallery, and reservoir: July – October 2014
  4. Inlet piping repairs, Fountain valve install, repairs to Fountain: August – September 2014
  5. Screening Well and Sluice gate Repairs: October – December 2014
  6. Reservoir disinfection & testing: December 2014
  7. Refill reservoir: December 2014
  8. Construction substantially complete, reservoir returned to service: December 2014

Construction Impacts

During this project access to the Portico portion of the Upper Gate House will be restricted. Access to the Portico will not be permitted due to construction activities. The walking path around the circumference of the reservoir will largely be available for use during this project. However, at the Upper Gate House the walkway will be closed due to construction activities at the Portico and Upper Gate House.

The roadway around the reservoir will be maintained during the majority of the project. However, there will be isolated short periods of time when the roadway will need to be closed where the roadway passes in front of the Upper Gate House. Whenever the contractor’s operations require closing the roadway in front of the Upper Gate House a section of the roadway will be converted from one-way to two-way roadway to accommodate vehicular traffic. Appropriate signage will be used whenever the roadway is changed from its normal one-way to a temporary two-way traffic pattern.

Project Updates

Project updates will be posted periodically during the construction phase of this project. Check often.


Call City project manager Michael Bushart at (585) 428-7567, or email him.