SUNOL -- This small town is getting an $11.4 million water system overhaul to fix problems with inadequate water flows for fighting fires.

Sunol's water supplier, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, plans in mid-May to start a yearlong project adding 26 new hydrants and some new pipelines and replacing local water tanks.

The bucolic town's old system of delivering water for fire suppression was developed piecemeal over many decades. As a result, the system doesn't provide enough water flows, pressure and hydrants to the hydrants for some 1,000 residents, officials said.

"This project definitely will improve protections against fires," said David Briggs, the San Francisco PUC's water supply and treatment division manger.

Sunol will get 26 new hydrants added to the three already in place. Sunol's four water tanks will be replaced by two new tanks with capacity equal to the old ones. A Pleasanton water main will be extended to supply water to hydrants on upper Kilkare Road in Sunol.

Briggs said San Francisco PUC identified the project as a comprehensive fix for Sunol's water pressure and flow inadequacies. Flows to household sinks and faucets will either improve or remain unchanged, he added.

Sunol residents will not pay higher rates or charges for the project because part of their water bill money is set aside to make improvements to the water system. The construction will cause some noise and inconvenience.

To minimize disruption, crews will do most of their work between 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. on weekdays. Some work, however, will be necessary on week nights and may be needed on some weekends, the San Francisco PUC said.

Some of the construction must be done at Sunol Glen School, but that work will be scheduled when classes are not in session. Construction crews will not block access to driveways of private homes.

A Sunol Citizens Advisory Committee meeting on the water project will be held at 6:30 p.m. April 16 at the Sunol Glen School, 11061 Main St. in Sunol.

Contact Denis Cuff at 925-943-8267 or dcuff@bayareanewsgroup.com. Follow him at Twitter.com/deniscuff.

FYI
The Sunol Citizens Advisory Committee meeting will get a briefing on the water project at 6:30 p.m. April 16 at the Sunol Glen School, 11061 Main St. in Sunol.