Panoramic Hill improvements

Panoramic Hill street closures map

Panoramic Hill street closures map

Workplan and schedule

EBMUD is planning to replace University Reservoir, built in 1963, University Pumping Plant, built in 1906, and approximately 7,300 feet of pipe in the Panoramic Hill neighborhood in Berkeley and Oakland. These facilities are at the end of their useful life and do not meet current standards. A majority of the pipelines were installed prior to or in the 1940s. The pipes are made of unlined cast iron, and many have a leak history that makes them eligible for replacement. This work will increase both water reliability and operating efficiency in your neighborhood.

EBMUD has worked closely with the cities of Berkeley and Oakland and their respective Fire Departments during the planning design and construction of this project. Four public meetings have been held regarding the reservoir, pipeline sand pumping plant.

The street closures shown in the adjacent map will be segmented based on work load so portions of it could be open while other portions are closed.

EBMUD Pipeline Replacements  Construction is underway and planned for completion by the end of 2017. Pipelines will be replaced over five phases. Construction hours are Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with the affected streets closed to through traffic from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Residents are asked to plan their commute in accordance with street closures. 

Phase 3 is currently scheduled to begin in May 2017. Construction hours for Phase 3 are Monday to Friday 9 a.m to 12 p.m and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. During Phase 3 work hours, access to the Panoramic Hill neighborhood via lower Panoramic Way will be closed. Emergency medical and fire responders will be stationed on Panoramic Hill during this time.

EBMUD University Reservoir Replacement Construction is underway and planned for completion in late 2017. Work hours are Monday to Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

EBMUD University Pumping Plant Replacement Design is underway and construction is planned to commence in the fall 2017.  

Published studies and other resources

Pipes in the sky

In September 2016, EBMUD saved almost ten times as much time and money while reducing community impacts by helicoptering pipes to the top of Panoramic Hill. This method of pipe delivery was a first for EBMUD.

The $20,000 helicopter contract enabled EBMUD to deliver 2,500 feet of high-density polyethylene pipe in just four hours to replace cast iron pipe for the Panoramic Hills Improvement Project.

Helicopter delivery eliminated the need to cut the pipe into short segments that could be trucked up the hill, reduced the labor that would otherwise have been needed to weld those segments back together, and reduced the time in public streets by as much as a month. This innovative, safe and eco-friendly delivery cost just $8 per foot of pipe.

EBMUD also is using innovation to considering the types of materials we put in the ground. Learn more about the EBMUD Pipeline Rebuild program, a new way of replacing old pipes.


Ben Glickstein, Community Affairs Representative
Phone: 510-287-1631
Contractors: For bid opportunities on EBMUD projects, see Business center