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This requirement applies to potholing and all other construction work within SFPUC property.

Potholing to determine depths of SFPUC pipelines is required when the work proposed within SFPUC property, ROW or easements is potentially in conflict with its pipelines.

Applicant is requested to submit the requirements listed below in parallel with the Project Review Application required by the SFPUC Land and Natural Resources, Land Management Division. For more information, contact Joanne Wilson at (650) 652-3205 or email:

Submittal Requirements and Guidelines

  1. Cover letter should include the following:

    • requesting party’s name and address,
    • name of project owner if different than requesting party,
    • scope of work, and
    • project location (closest address or landmark).

  2. Engineering drawings shall be prepared and signed by a professional engineer licensed by the State of California and submitted in size of 11”x17”. The drawings must include the following:

    All review requests must be supported with engineering drawings.

  3. All utilities crossing SFPUC pipelines must have a minimum clearance of (1') feet for open excavation, (2') feet for directional boring operation. All underground utility crossings shall be as close to perpendicular as possible to SFPUC pipelines. No utility is allowed to run parallel to SFPUC pipelines within the SFPUC ROW. No permanent structure is allowed on SFPUC right-of ways without written approval from Land Engineering.

  4. All sewer or recycled water pipeline crossings must comply with current State Code of Regulations from State Department of Public Health.

  5. Any metallic pipeline with cathodic protection crossing SFPUC pipelines are required to install test stations as shown on Attachment A-2.

  6. No equipment shall be allowed within the ROW unless the SFPUC pipeline is determined by potholing to be (4') feet or greater below grade. Maximum external loading over SFPUC pipelines is AASHTO H-10 loading with a minimum of (3') feet of cover (or H-20 loading with a minimum of (4') feet of cover). If the loading condition above is exceeded, engineering calculations as shown in AWWA, M9 may be required to show that the proposed condition would not impose a load of more than 500 PSF onto SFPUC pipelines. Please see the Equipment and Vehicle Load Restrictions Policy.

  7. No vibratory compaction equipment shall be allowed without SFPUC’s prior written approval.

  8. For any mechanical excavation and grading over the pipeline, the last (2’) feet of soil around the pipeline shall be removed manually or by other methods approved by SFPUC.

  9. Landscaping or plantings must comply with Right of Way Vegetation Policy, if applicable.

  10. Please mail complete information to the following address:
SFPUC Water Supply and Treatment
1000 El Camino Real
Millbrae, CA 94030
Attention: Stacie Feng, P.E


Last updated: 8/4/2016 4:56:15 PM