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City Takes Over Murray Hill Water System 

House with brown siding and attached two car garage with green doors. Clear blue sky in background
A home for sale in the Murray Hill condominium development in Montpelier. Photo courtesy of realtor.com.
In a win-win for the Montpelier public works department and for the Murray Hill development, the city has assumed responsibility for the development’s water system. Montpelier Public Works director Kurt Motyka estimates $50,000 yearly revenue from the city’s new ownership of the Murray Hill water system easement and quitclaim deeds. Murray Hill’s well water system had been failing, necessitating connecting to public water. This change in ownership, maintenance, and operations of a private development water system to a municipality is a not uncommon and began with Murray Hill in December 2021. 

Murray Hill residents are on their fifth city water billing cycle according to Beverley Hill responding from the Montpelier City Clerk’s office. Murray Hill had always used city lines for sewage, but the residents association had relied on wells for water. Before the ownership change, the association had installed PVC piping and has water pressure of 70 psi, so Motyka doesn’t anticipate additional work load or costs for Montpelier’s Department of Public Works from this development.

The city council approved taking over the association’s water system at its regular meeting on Dec. 14, 2022 through the “consent agenda” — a series of items deemed noncontroversial typically passed with one motion.

The Murray Hill development is a large, private, residential neighborhood on Murray Hill Drive and Cityside Drive, off upper Main Street. Murray Hill was developed in the 1980s and consists of condominiums and free-standing homes. Condominiums, when available, are on average priced in the $200,000 range, and homes in the $300,000–$500,000 range. Currently there are 64 condominiums and 20 houses in this development.