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TITLE 43TRANSPORTATION
PART 1TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
CHAPTER 21RIGHT OF WAY
SUBCHAPTER CUTILITY ACCOMMODATION
RULE §21.40Underground Utilities

vent.

    (E) Plastic lines. Plastic lines shall be encased within the right of way on crossings, and must have at least 30 inches of cover.

    (F) Aboveground appurtenances. Except for vents, no above ground utility appurtenances for gas lines shall be permitted within the right of way.

  (2) High-pressure pipelines and saltwater pipelines.

    (A) Depth of cover for crossings.

      (i) Depth of cover is the depth to the top of the carrier pipe or casing, as applicable. Where materials and other conditions justify, such as on existing lines remaining in place, the district may approve a minimum depth of cover under the pavement structure of 12 inches or one-half the diameter of the pipe, whichever is greater. For encased high-pressure pipeline, the minimum depth of cover shall be:

        (I) the greater of 18 inches or one-half the diameter of the pipe, under pavement structures;

        (II) 30 inches if the line is outside the pavement structure or under a ditch; or

        (III) 36 inches for unencased sections of encased lines outside the pavement structure.

      (ii) Where a reinforced concrete slab is used to protect the pipeline, the district may authorize a reduction in the depths specified in this section. For unencased high-pressure pipelines, the minimum depth of cover is as follows:

        (I) 60 inches under the pavement surface or 18 inches under the pavement structure in paved areas; or

        (II) 48 inches if the line is placed outside the pavement structure or under a ditch.

    (B) Depth of cover for longitudinal placement. The minimum depth of cover shall be 48 inches.

    (C) Encasement. Casing shall consist of a vented steel pipe.

    (D) Unencasement.

      (i) Where encasement is not employed, the utility shall show that the welded steel carrier pipe will provide sufficient strength to withstand the internal design pressure and the dead and live loads of the pavement structure and traffic. Additional protective measures must include:

        (I) heavier wall thickness, higher factor of safety in design, or both;

        (II) adequate coating and wrapping;

        (III) cathodic protection; and

        (IV) the use of Barlow's formula regarding maximum allowable operating pressure and wall thickness, as specified in 49 CFR §192.105.

      (ii) Shallow anode bed types exceeding 48 inches in width shall not be permitted in the right of way. All others must have a depth of coverage of at least 36 inches. Deep well anode beds of up to 60 inches in diameter are acceptable. Rectifier and meter loop poles shall be placed at or near the right of way line.

      (iii) The minimum length of the additional protection shall be the same as that required for an encased crossing.

      (iv) The district may allow existing lines under low-volume highways to remain in place without encasement or extension of encasement if they are protected by a reinforced concrete slab or equivalent protection or if they are located at a depth of five feet under the pavement structure and not less than four feet under a highway ditch.

    (E) Vents. Vents shall be installed at both ends of a casing, regardless of length, with a marker on at least one end. Vents shall be placed at the right of way line immediately above the pipeline, situated so as not to interfere with highway maintenance or be concealed by vegetation. The owner's name, address, and emergency telephone number shall be shown on each vent marker.

    (F) Aboveground appurtenances. Aboveground appurtenances, except vents for gas lines, shall not be permitted within the right of way.

(c) Water lines.

  (1) Material type. All material types used for water lines shall conform to American Waterworks Association, applicable local requirements, and 30 TAC §290.44(a)(relating to Water Distribution).

  (2) Depth of cover. The minimum depth of cover shall be 30 inches, but not less than 18 inches below the pavement structure for crossings.

  (3) Encasement. Unless another type of encasement is approved by the district, water lines crossing under paved highways must be placed in a steel encasement pipe within the limits of the right of way. At the district's discretion, encasement may be omitted under center medians and outer separations that are more than 76 feet wide. At the district's discretion, encasement under side road entrances may be omitted in consideration of traffic volume, condition of highway, maintenance responsibility, or district practice. Existing water lines 24 inches or greater may be allowed to remain unencased under the pavement of new low volume highways, provided depth and all other requirements of 30 TAC §290.44 are met.

  (4) Manholes. The width dimensions shall be no larger than is necessary to hold equipment involved and to meet safety standards for maintenance personnel. The maximum inside diameter of the manhole chimney shall not exceed 48 inches. The outside diameter of the manhole chimney at the ground level shall not exceed 36 inches.

  (5) Aboveground appurtenances.

    (A) Fire hydrants and valves. When feasible, fire hydrants and blow-off valves are to be located at the right of way line. Fire hydrants shall not be placed in the sidewalk or any closer than five feet from the back of the curb. Valve locations shall be placed so as not to interfere with maintenance of the highway.

    (B) Water meters. Individual service meters shall be placed outside the limits of the right of way. Master meters for a point of service connection may be placed in a manhole with a maximum width of 48 inch inside diameter. If additional volume is required, a manhole with a neck of 60-inch depth must be used.

    (C) Service lines crossing highway by bore. Lines for customer service that cross the highway may be placed in a high-density polyethylene (HDPE) encasement pipe without joints (rolled pipe).

(d) Nonpotable water control facilities.

  (1) Applicability. This subsection applies to agricultural irrigation facilities, water control improvement districts, municipal utility districts, flood control districts, canals, and similar nonpotable water control facilities.

  (2) Depth of cover for buried pipe facilities. The minimum depth of cover, regardless of type of pipe used, shall be 30 inches, but not less than 18 inches below any pavement structure.

  (3) Encasement for buried pipe facilities. Unless the district approves another type of encasement, all non-potable water control lines crossing under paved highways within the right of way must be placed in a steel encasement pipe. At the district's discretion, encasement may be omitted under center medians and outer separations that are more than 76 feet wide.

  (4) Location and design requirements. Open ditch facilities and buried pipe facilities designed and constructed in accordance with this subchapter may be installed across the right of way. Longitudinal buried pipe facilities installed within the right of way must conform with §21.41(c) of this subchapter (relating to Overhead Electric and Communication Lines), consistent with the clearances applicable to all roadside obstacles. Open ditch facilities shall not be installed longitudinally within the right of way, nor will any aboveground appurtenances be permitted within the horizontal clearance.

  (5) Levee/ditch travel road location. Coordination with and approval by the district is required where levee/ditch travel roads intersect the highway.

(e) Sanitary sewer lines.

  (1) Material type. All material types used for sanitary sewer lines shall conform to applicable provisions of 30 TAC Chapter 217 and applicable local requirements.

  (2) Depth of cover. The minimum depth of cover shall be 30 inches, but not less than 18 inches below any pavement structure.

  (3) Encasement. Pressurized line crossings under paved highways within the limits of the right of way shall be placed in a steel encasement pipe. Gravity flow lines not conforming to the minimum depth of cover shall be encased in steel or concrete. At the district's discretion, encasement may be omitted under center medians and outer separations that are more than 76 feet wide.

  (4) Manholes. Manholes serving sewer lines up to 12 inches shall have a maximum inside diameter of 48 inches. For lines larger than 12 inches, the manhole inside diameter may be increased an equal amount, up to a maximum diameter of 60 inches. Manholes for large interceptor sewers shall be designed to keep the overall dimensions to a minimum. The outside diameter of the manhole chimney at the ground level shall not exceed 36 inches.

  (5) Lift stations. Lift stations and pump stations for sanitary sewer lines exceeding 48 inches inside diameter shall be located outside the limits of right of way.

(f) Electric and communication Lines.

  (1) Underground electric lines.

    (A) Depth of cover. All underground electric lines placed within the right of way may be installed by direct bury at depths according to the voltage of electric lines as required by the National Electrical Safety Code and as shown in the following chart.

Attached Graphic

    (B) Encasement. Electric lines crossing the roadway shall be encased in steel or comparable material greater than or equal to that of ductile iron, with satisfactory joints, or materials and designs that will provide equal or better protection of the integrity of the highway system and resistance to damage from corrosive elements to which they may be exposed. The lines shall be buried a minimum of 36 inches under highway ditches, and 60 inches below the pavement structure. Encasement shall be provided as outlined in this section.

    (C) Installation. Longitudinal underground electric lines may be placed by plowing or open trench method. All plowing and trenching shall be performed in a uniform alignment with the right of way. If the installation of the facility is found to deviate from the approved location, the district, at its sole discretion, may require the adjustment of the facility to the approved location. The utility facility shall be located as set forth in §21.37(b) of this subchapter.

    (D) Aboveground appurtenances.

      (i) Aboveground appurtenances installed as part of an underground electric line shall be located at or near the right of way line, and shall not impede highway maintenance or operations.

      (ii) Structures that are larger in plan view than single poles may be placed on the right of way if:

        (I) the installation will not hinder highway maintenance operations;

        (II) the housing will be placed at or near the right of way line;

        (III) the installation will not reduce visibility and sight distance of the traveling public;

        (IV) the dimensions of the housing are minimized, particularly where the need to allow space for highway improvement or accommodation of other utility lines is apparent;

        (V) the outside width, length (longitudinal with respect to the right of way), and height dimensions of the aboveground portion of the housing do not exceed 36 inches, 60 inches, and 54 inches respectively;

        (VI) the supporting slab does not project more than three inches above the ground line, nor extend more than 12 inches on either side of the housing structure; and

        (VII) the installation will be compatible with adjacent land uses.

    (E) Manholes. Manholes serving electric and communication lines shall conform to the requirements of this section.

    (F) Abandonment. Underground electric lines may be abandoned in place at the discretion of the district.

  (2) Underground communication lines.

    (A) Longitudinal. The minimum depth of cover for cable television and copper cable communications lines shall be 24 inches. The minimum depth of cover for fiber optic facilities shall be 42 inches. If the utility that is the owner/operator of a fiber optic facility waives damages and fully indemnifies the department in a form acceptable to the department, the minimum depth of cover may be reduced to not less than 36 inches.

    (B) Crossings.

      (i) The minimum depth of cover for cable television and copper cable communication lines shall be 24 inches under ditches or 18 inches beneath the bottom of the pavement structure, whichever is greater.

      (ii) The top of the fiber optic facility shall be placed a minimum of 42 inches below the ditch grade or 18 inches below the pavement structure or 60 inches below the top of the pavement surface, whichever is greater. The department may authorize a minimum depth of cover of not less than 36 inches below the ditch grade or 60 inches below the top of the pavement surface, whichever is greater, if the utility waives damages and fully indemnifies the department in a form acceptable to the department.

      (iii) The department may require encasement or other suitable protection when necessary to protect the highway facility when the line is located:

        (I) at less than minimum depth;

        (II) near the footing of a bridge or other highway structure; or

Cont'd...

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