PG&E to replace gas pipeline on Stanford campus land

As part of its plan to enhance gas pipeline safety, PG&E will replace a transmission pipeline that runs through Stanford campus land. The work is expected to begin in late July and be completed by mid-October.

At a meeting of the board of the Stanford Campus Residential Leaseholders on Wednesday, May 30, PG&E representatives outlined their plans to replace a gas transmission pipeline, Line 109, a portion of which runs through Stanford campus lands. The work is expected to begin in late July and be completed by mid-October. 

"As part of PG&E's multi-year plan to enhance gas pipeline safety, PG&E has identified a section of transmission pipeline on the Stanford campus for replacement. Line 109 runs along Junipero Serra Boulevard and is scheduled for replacement this year," said Eric Jansen, an account manager for the utility company. "The replacement of Line 109 will use modern materials and will be installed with safe and proven installation methods used throughout the nation."

Jansen said that while the work will require auto and bike lane closures along Junipero Serra, "we will strive to keep disruptions to a minimum, and will keep the Stanford community informed as the timeline and details of this work are finalized."

Two gas transmission pipelines – Line 109 and Line 132 – run through Stanford property. Line 109 along Junipero Serra Boulevard is a non-standard 22-inch diameter pipe and will be replaced with a standard size 24-inch pipe that will allow for internal pipe visual inspection. That line was originally installed in the 1930s.

Line 132, which is the same one whose failure caused the tragic explosion in San Bruno in September 2010, was run through a battery of tests in November 2011. Problems were found on two sections of pipe on that line. Those sections, called T-30 and T-31, were subsequently repaired and now meet the pressure testing requirements. PG&E officials said last night that at this point, there are no plans to replace Line 132.

As Line 109 is replaced, new pipe will be installed next to the existing pipe. The utility company will conduct regular inspections and tests as the new pipe is installed. Once it has been replaced, the old pipe will be taken out of service. Most of the work is expected to take place between the hours of 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., Monday through Saturday.

"Stanford continues to monitor the proposed work by PG&E that is near or adjacent to Stanford property. PG&E has been receptive to our requests to meet and has also provided information and responses to questions posed by Stanford utilities and health and safety personnel," said Larry Gibbs, associate vice provost for environmental health and safety. "Replacement of the transmission pipe along the Junipero Serra Boulevard corridor near Stanford residences will result in a much improved pipeline safety program, and one that can more easily be monitored in the future. We view the short-term inconvenience of the pipe replacement project as a long-term investment in the overall safety of the PG&E transmission line near Stanford."

The company plans to hold open houses, similar to one held last year to provide an opportunity for homeowners to ask questions and raise concerns. PG&E officials also will continue to provide updated information through university communications vehicles as well as direct mailings.

If you have questions about PG&E's fieldwork and pipeline safety programs, call the company's special gas project customer representatives at (888) 743-7431 between 7 a.m. and 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, or call the PG&E Customer Care Call Center at (800) 743-5000, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You also can learn more about PG&E's gas system by visiting