KUB, like other utilities nationwide, continues to face the challenge of replacing aging infrastructure. KUB launched its Century II infrastructure management program in 2007 to improve and maintain the electric, natural gas, water, and wastewater systems for our customers.

Century II includes the maintenance and replacement strategies for each system that were in place before Century II and establishes sustainable replacement cycles. It moves KUB into its second century of service by improving each system through sound planning, resource allocation, and continued, but accelerated, investment.

Funding for Century II is on track to help KUB continue to provide safe, reliable utility services and meet customer needs—now and in the future. By anticipating and addressing needs now, customers will realize long-term benefits and experience even fewer service interruptions.

For an overview of the replacement focus for each service, please see below.

You can also find more information in our Century II Information Sheet and Frequently Asked Questions section.

Electric System

KUB is on a sustainable life-cycle replacement program for poles, overhead wires, and underground cables. We are also concentrating on our substations, some of which have been in service since the 1940s. As we replace transmission poles, we are also adding fiber-optic lines between substations to improve data communication.

By The Numbers (as of the end of Fiscal Year 2021): 

  • Approximately 1,400 poles were replaced in FY 21 for a total of approximately 22,000 poles replaced since 2012. Details about KUB's pole replacement process can be found here.
  • 9 miles of transmission lines were replaced in FY 20 as part of KUB's high voltage transmission system rebuild. 
  • KUB's substation modernization efforts are 72 percent complete. These efforts include installation of longer-lasting technology and animal resistant equipment to improve electric reliability.

The Natural Gas System

KUB continues to look at the need to replace older pipe types and extend service to provide a safe, reliable system to serve current and future customers. The 40-year cast iron/ductile pipe program, which began in 1980, has been recently completed. The natural gas system continues to focus on replacing older pipe types with plastic pipe that has a longer life and lower maintenance costs. Revenues over this timeframe will also help fund new construction, support regulatory programs, and increase safety surveys and corrosion monitoring.

By The Numbers (as of the end of Fiscal Year 2021):

  • 8.85 miles of steel main were replaced with polyethylene pipe, which has a lower installation cost and considerably less maintenance.
  • KUB installed 2.6 miles of distribution main to provide resiliency to strategic locations within the gas system, providing an added level of reliability.
  • KUB's in-house gas valve maintenance crew inspects KUB's 21,000 valves on a five-year cycle with critical valves inspected annually.

Water System

We are proud of our safe, high-quality water and committed to maintaining the system that delivers it. Although KUB's water system has stood the test of time well, some components are nearing the end of their useful life.

By The Numbers (as of the end of Fiscal Year 2021):

  • More than 8 miles of galvanized pipe and more than 6 miles of cast iron/cement pipe were replaced in FY 21.
  • KUB crews operate and maintain 8,500 hydrants on a 3-year cycle. Crews also inspect and maintain KUB's 20,000 water vlaves on a 5-year cycle with critical valves inspected annually.

Wastewater System

Sanitary sewer overflows and aging wastewater system infrastructure are growing concerns across our nation. KUB, like many other utilities, is under a federal Consent Decree (CD) to make system improvements. KUB launched Partners Acting for a Cleaner Environment (PACE 10) in 2004, and when the Environmental Protection Agency issued our CD in 2005, we included those requirements in the PACE 10 program. After the last of the 134 collection system projects required under the CD were completed in 2014, KUB transitioned all wastewater system improvement projects under the Century II program with our other systems.

KUB’s final project under the CD is a $50M upgrade to the Kuwahee Wastewater Treatment Plant on Neyland Drive. 

Under Century II, KUB will continue to evaluate our entire wastewater collection system through its Continuing Sewer System Assessment Program (CSSAP). Data collected through the CSSAP is used to address inflow and infiltration and other causes of sanitary sewer overflows by maintaining or restoring capacity and structural integrity throughout our wastewater system.  KUB will continue to upgrade the wastewater system on a sustainable life cycle.

By The Numbers (as of the end of Fiscal Year 2021):

  • 15.6 miles of pipe were rehabilitated or replaced in FY 21.
  • KUB invested approximately $8.2 million in wastewater plant maintenance and improvements during FY 21. Approximately $16.1 million was also invested in upgrades to the Kuwahee Wastewater Treatment Plant as part of the final project under KUB's Consent Decree.