Construction of Reservoirs
The power to look ahead is a gift of which every man is not possessed. Thus it sometimes has happened that in designing a water works system, especially when this system was formulated and built some years ago, when the growth of cities was far less rapid than at the present day, the engineer who designed the water supply failed to visualize the extensions that would later come to the city and consequently did not provide facilities for them. In a case of this kind, as has so often happened, the municipality must revamp its entire water supply system or even build a new one to meet the situation.
It is at a time like this that the proper size, design and construction of the reservoir or reservoirs enters most vitally into the problem. An error in judgment as to the size necessary to take care of a water supply sufficient to provide for not only the needs of the present population but also to insure the consumption, both domestic and for fire protection, of the future years, will be an expensive proposition. It is far better, even with the added expense, to install at first a reservoir that is large enough to take care of all of these present and future needs than to later he compelled to change over and enlarge the system at a great cost that should never have been laid upon the city.
The installation of a reserve reservoir is almost invariably an economy in the long run. This has been proved time and time again, by cities which have suffered either through failure of the water supply through drought, or through the overtaxing of the supply by reason of the added draft consequent upon a large fire. In either case an ample sized reserve reservoir, doubling or trebling the supply, would have saved the citizens from discomfort and loss and the much-vexed superintendent ‘of water works from many an added gray hair.
It is the old story again that “foresight is better than hindsight.”