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City of Tampa to spend $3.2 billion replacing aging infrastructure

TAMPA – Officials with the City of Tampa say they responded to more than 1,200 water main breaks in 2018 and nearly 1,000 wastewater cave-ins since July 2017.

We're told the City of Tampa spends about $20 million a year fixing its aging infrastructure. Public Works rolled out a plan to residents Monday night to make a fix, spending $3.2 billion over the next 20 years.

“It’s imperative that we do this and we do this and we do it quickly," said Tampa Mayor Jane Castor. “It's like having to replace your roof on your house or your air conditioning system, it’s not something people wanted to spend money on but it’s something that has to be done.”

The city plans to increase water rates for customers incrementally in the coming years. ABC Action News has learned, many residents will see an average $4 monthly hike starting next year.

"We don’t have a choice," said Public Works Director Brad Baird. "We have to fix our infrastructure or our reactive costs are going to keep going up and up.”