McCutcheon and Thorndell Sanitary Relief (12346)

McCutcheon and Thorndell Sanitary Relief (12346)

As part of a long-term effort to reduce basement backups and sewer overflows, MSD Project Clear is designing a project to replace approximately 1,275 feet of undersized wastewater sewers in Richmond Heights.

This project is estimated to begin construction in the Winter of 2023.

About the Project

Public Meeting - October 25, 2022

Project Map

Why is this project being designed?

As part of their evaluation, our team of engineers determined that the sewer in this neighborhood is undersized. During intense rainfall, the sewers become overwhelmed leading to basement backups.

At the time of the preliminary study (2020), MSD had received 13 complain from residents who experienced building back-ups.

What is the goal of this project?

MSD Project Clear is investing $1.1 million to design and construct this project to increase the capacity of the existing sewer which will reduce the likelihood of basement backups during heavy rainfall.

Project Facts

  • Construction is estimated to begin in Winter 2023.
  • MSD Project Clear will replace approximately 1,275 feet of sanitary pipe.

What can residents expect?

Type of Construction:

This project will be constructed by digging through the surface of the ground in a process known as “open-cut” construction. The pictures above depict what a neighborhood will look like before, during, and after a typical open-cut project.

With any type of construction, residents can expect to see and hear heavy equipment during the sewer excavation process.

Traffic and Access: 

As much of construction will take place in the street, residents should expect temporary lane closures on McCutcheon Rd and Thorndell Dr. MSD Project Clear will maintain at least one lane of traffic at all times to allow residents to enter and exit.

Similarly, construction may lead to temporarily limited access to some properties along the construction route. Restrictions will be limited to active construction hours, and the contractor will notify property owners in advance of any access restrictions.


After all new sewer pipes are installed, the contractor will restore the construction site according to all MSD and local requirements. This could include sodding any disturbed areas, replacing disturbed pavement, reinstalling fences, etc. More detail on this will become available after a contractor is selected.

At least one MSD Inspector will be on-site part of the day for every day the contractor is working.

What is the timeline?

This is the current tentative project schedule. This is subject to change based on a variety of factors including weather.

  • Project design completion: Fall 2022
  • Easement acquisition completion: Winter 2022
  • Estimated construction start: Spring 2024
  • Estimated project duration: 12-18 months


Trees may need to be removed to construct parts of this project. If there are good options to avoid removing trees, MSD will make every attempt to do that. Property owners with trees that will need to be removed that are not located in already existing easements will have been compensated for the removal through the easement acquisition process.

While MSD’s contractor is connecting a home’s lateral to the new wastewater sewer, they may ask residents to limit water use. In general, this process can take between two to five hours, depending on the complexity of the connection. The contractor will notify property owners in advance.

MSD does not anticipate other utility services being disrupted during this project. We will work with Missouri One Call to locate utilities before beginning construction. Occasionally, the contractor may run into utilities that were not located by Missouri One Call which could result in temporary utility disruptions. If this happens, MSD will work with the utility to restore service as quickly as possible.

During active construction, some property owners may experience driveway access restrictions for a short period of time. The contractor will notify property owners in advance of any temporary access restrictions to allow them time to move their vehicles. The contractor will also fill trenches with gravel or place steel plates over trenches during non-working hours so residents can use their driveways during those times.

No. MSD Project Clear is two utilities in one, providing wastewater services and stormwater services. However, these services have separate funding sources and separate solutions. The McCutcheon & Thorndell project is funded by MSD’s wastewater fees and will improve wastewater services for customers in this area. It will not affect stormwater issues like overland flooding.

The project map shows where MSD Project Clear is installing new sewer pipes or replacing existing sewer pipes, but it does not show existing sewer pipes. The portion of new pipe that appears disconnected on the project map will connect two existing sewer pipes. This design will improve water flow and will further reduce the likelihood of wastewater backups.