CLAYTON, Mo. (KMOV.com) -- Missouri American Water expects to spend $70 million this year to upgrade old water lines like the ones that broke over the weekend in University City and Richmond Heights, near Clayton and Concordia. The breaks were the results of old lines and cold weather.
To prevent future breaks, crews are working to replace older lines, starting Monday in Clayton.
Local business owners are worried about the effects the waterline work will have on their business.
"I think we will lose business in the short term, however long term, it's what we need to do," says Richard Rutledge, owner of the Clayton Car Wash.
Work on Hanley Road, between Forsyth and the overpass for the Forest Park Parkway, is set to begin tomorrow. A spokesperson with Missouri American Water points to the Hanley Road work as a prime example of the replacement projects.
The water company says that after these projects are finished, the expense could be passed on to customers.
A spokesperson for the utility says those increases in water bills are not automatic and will need to be passed by the Missouri Public Service Commission. The commission will then decide if the costs are passed on to the customer.
Missouri American Water says it has 13 improvement projects currently going on, with projects extending from Spanish Lake to Sunset Hills.