Supplying adequate water to Southern California’s growing cities can be an expensive problem that requires innovative solutions. The California Aqueduct Mojave Siphon Pipeline project for the California Department of Water Resources, completed by Sundt in 1996, is a great example.


The $49.8 million project consisted of installing three 12-foot-diameter steel pipes, each 11,400 feet long, set side-by-side in a trench. Rather than purchasing the pipe, we determined a more economical way to manufacture the huge pipe sections in Phoenix and ship them to the jobsite – in the Mojave Desert, 50 miles from San Bernardino, California – using specially designed trucks.


Each section of pipe was 60 feet long and weighed 61,000 pounds. The interior of the pipe was sandblasted with robotically controlled equipment prior to receiving a coat of epoxy paint and a mortar lining and coating. A 220-ton crawler crane set pipe sections into a 25-foot-deep trapezoidal trench that was 110 feet wide at the top and 60 feet wide at the bottom. Finally, a conveyer system distributed the select fill over the pipeline for bedding.



California Department of Water Resources


California Aqueduct Mojave Siphon Pipeline