Water pipeline project underway in Sanilac County

They're calling it the dawn of a new era.

Miles of pipeline transporting fresh water to three counties and two cities.

According to officials, the Karegnondi Water Pipeline project is bringing much more than just cheaper drinking water.

Genesee County Drain Commissioner, Jeff Wright said the project has been years in the making, "I'm almost pinching myself still."

Officials from Genesee, Lapeer and Sanilac Counties and Flint and Lapeer City broke ground on the Karegnondi wateWater Pipeline Friday.

"To be able to access the raw water for each of our communities is going to be a huge boost to economic development and it's going to draw attention from all over the country and the world," said Flint Mayor, Dayne Walling.

74 miles of large diameter pipeline will stretch for 74 miles from Lake Huron to Flint.

Eventually, giving the city independence from skyrocketing water rates trickling down from Detroit.

"Once this starts, in three years there will be adjustments in these rates," said Mayor Walling.

Meantime, officials estimate the $274 million project will create more than 700 jobs and spur economic growth.

"It's a game changer it has the potential to not only lower the rates as we talked about earlier but to encourage new avenues in agriculture business and potentially green technologies," said Wright.

The project is expected to take around 2.5 years to complete depending on the weather.