Work to replace nearly eight miles of aging Corning Natural Gas lines is on schedule, company officials say.

CORNING | Work to replace nearly eight miles of aging Corning Natural Gas lines is on schedule, company officials say.

The estimated $6 million project, which began in the early spring, is expected to be completed by the end of December, said Jerry Sleve, Corning Natural Gas Corp. vice president of administration.

“We expect to have all the scheduled capital projects finished up by the end of the year,” Sleve said. “We do appreciate everybody’s patience on the Northside and throughout our area. We have 7 to 8 miles of pipe going in the area this year.”

The majority of the project will take place in the City of Corning, Sleve said. The work includes replacing pipelines and meters.

Corning Natural Gas spends about $6 million a year installing about 7 miles of pipe, Sleve said.

“Some years, even a little more than that, and some years a little less,” Sleve said. “But overall we’re averaging over seven miles a year. The replacements will help both in lessening lost gas, limiting … calls we get from customers.”

Aging lines in the city will be replaced by the end of 2015 on sections of Buffalo, Onondaga, Seneca, East Pulteney, East Bridge, Warren, Columbia, Dwight, Fuller, Townley, Sharwill, Strathmore Place, Centerway, MountainBrow Apartments and East Denison Parkway, Sleve said.

Other work is being done throughout the CNG service area, which runs from Southport to Hammondsport.

The majority of the work in 2013 was completed in Houghton Plot, Sleve said. In 2014, work focused on the city’s Southside.

Corning city officials welcome the upgrades.

“We’ve had a couple of issues in the (Northside) areas in the past with leaking gas lines,” said Councilman Jim Nelson, R-7. “From what I understand, Corning Natural Gas is doing what they can do to improve them. So I’m happy.”

Councilman Ross Cavallaro, D-8, agreed.

“I can appreciate what’s being done; they actually found a leak in front of my house that they ended up fixing,” Cavallaro said. “The work needed to be done."

Cavallaro said several residents he’s talked to are confident the installation of the lines will be completed this year.

“But they are worried the work to seed grass and install broken sidewalks will not be completed by when the winter weather hits,” Cavallaro said.

Sleve said the lines will be completed by the end of the year, but some of the grass seeding and sidewalk work will be finished early next spring.

The improvements were first driven by a push from state officials to be more aggressive in replacing steel and cast iron lines, Sleve said. In the next 8-10 years all of the older lines will have been replaced with new mains.

Sleve said Corning Natural Gas officials are working on developing a list for next year’s line replacements.

“We don’t have it completed yet,” Sleve said.”It depends on several factors, the type of pipe, the age, how many leaks have been called in over the past several years. There are a lot of factors.”

The oldest CNG lines were installed in 1904, Sleve said. But many were installed in the 1940s and 1950s. There are currently more than 400 miles of pipeline in the company’s territory.