Sequixpur lies on the south side of the Ulpan valley and is essentially the gateway to the south side of the valley. There are approximately 130 homes in Sequixpur. The village covers a large area (approx. 5 sq. km) and is technically separated into Sequixpur I and Sequixpur II, but, from all our interactions, the two Sequixpurs act as one.
In the mid 1990’s, a water project was constructed to serve Sequixpur, Santo Tomas and Semesche. All three villages were supplied from a spring high on the mountain south of Sequixpur (2,067 m) with ample flow (estimated at 3-5 lps) and high quality. The section providing water to Santo Tomas and Semesche quickly broke and was not repaired. The Sequixpur portion of the project has continued to function. As such, there has been an active water committee in Sequixpur for 15+ years and they have been collecting 6 Q’s per month from 72 homes for that period. The current water committee is very knowledgable about their existing system and has been instrumental in developing the design for the new project.
Proposed Project Summary
The project has three primary objectives:
- Provide water to the 50 homes in Sequixpur that were either skipped in the initial project or have been constructed since that project was installed.
- Strengthen the existing system by creating a loop and replacing broken valves.
- Provide a location for the excess water from the spring to be quantified and collected so that this water can be used to supply other villages that do not have an adequate or quality source.
The third objective is an important reason for the Sequixpur project to be completed at this time when considering the overall development of providing water to communities throughout the Ulpan Valley. Secaj and Sejabol are two villages that do not have an obvious water source. Both of these villages are hydraulically down gradient from Sequixpur and it is our hope that we will be able to utilize the excess water from the Sequixpur system to supply at least these two villages with water.
The existing system in Sequixpur was well designed and has served the people well. It is a gravity system that flows from the spring at 2,067 m. The spring is protected with a large spring box that includes a simple coarse sand filter of a design that is typical in rural Guatemala. Pipes convey the water down to the village with a series of pressure break tanks. There is one large concrete storage tank (15 m3) at 1,930 m. Additional 1 m3 concrete pressure break tanks exist at 2,040 m, 1,989 m, 1,904 m, 1,857 m, 1,815 m and 1,789 m.
The system serves approximately 72 homes, the school, and local churches. Figure 1 shows a screen shot of the existing system approximated in Google Earth from GPS coordinates taken over the past year and a half.
Figure 1 – Existing Sequixpur System
Figure 1 Notes: North is up. Tank 15 is the large 15 m3 tank at 1,930 m. The other tanks are 1 m3 pressure break tanks. Additional service lines are present but have not been located at this time.
Proposed Project Details
Multiple site visits and meetings with the water committee have been performed to gather data on the existing system, layout the proposed system, and locate homes without a water service. Calculations on hydraulics have been modeled in EPANET and distance for estimating pipe quantities have been taken from field GPS coordinates and Google Earth.
The proposed project will attempt to accomplish the following tasks:
- Provide a spigot at approximately 50 homes that do not have service.
- Create new pressure zones.
- The first will be created by bypassing the existing 1,790 m pressure break tank to increase pressure in the village center. This will increase the pressure by approximately 25 m. to 1,815 m. Some homes at higher elevations only receive water during the night. From our research of the original design, all the pipe in this section should be able to handle the additional pressure, but the system will be monitored and capable of returning to the original pressure plain if problems arise.
- Within the new system, pressure zones will be created at 1,930 m., 1815 m. matching and connected to the new pressure zone in the village center, and a new 1,790 m. pressure zone serving the lower lying homes to the northeast.
- Three new tanks will be constructed:
- New 1 m3 concrete pressure break tanks will be constructed at 1,815 m. and 1,790 m.
- A rotoplast tank will be installed at the 1,930 m. location on the east loop. This tank will provide a location to monitor the overflow (excess water) from the system and will be temporary in nature so that the elevation of the tank can be changed to maximize the flow of the excess. Once the best location and elevation are determined a permanent tank will be built in this location.
- The new lines in the system will consist of 1.5”, 1” and ¾” PVC.
- Services will consist of a ball valve assembly, ¾” service, and galvanized riser with a spigot.
- Blow-offs (cleaning valves) and air release valves will be supplied along main lines at high and low points.
- Many of the isolation and float valves in the existing system are no longer operational. These valves will be replaced as part of this project.
The water committee has obviously tried to maintain the system in the past. We have observed new valves that have been installed recently and many patches to the sytem. Part of our goal in replacing valves in the existing system will be to train the water committee in better technics to replace (installing unions rather than melting pipe back together) broken valves, better cleaning technics, and give them a plan so that they will be able to purchase appropriate replacement parts for their system. Julio (our CAFNIMA employed water technician) will be leading the construction of the new 1 m3 tanks and leading the efforts to communicate the better technics for future operation and maintenance.
Figure 2 – Proposed Project Improvements
Figure 2 Notes: Proposed lines for the new loop and extension are shown in red. New lines providing connections from the existing system to new services are shown in purple.