Excellent Annual Report of the Division of Water of Columbus
The annual report of the Division of Water, of Columbus, Ohio, has recently been issued by Superintendent Jerry O’Shaugnessy, and shows the department to be in good condition. Columbus has a population of over 190,000, and is the State capital of Ohio. Its water supply is taken from the Scioto river, in which a storage reservoir is located, and is raised by low-lift pumps to a purification and softening works, from which it is delivered to the distribution system in one service by direct pumpage. Elevations in the city range from 30 to 170. City datum is 680.3 feet above mean sea level. The Scioto river above the storage dam has a drainage area of 1032 square miles. The pumpage generally exceeds the stream flow for about two months each year. The reservoir is 5.8 miles long; area 363 acres; mean depth 14.5 feet. The total capacity is 1,720,000,000 gallons, of which 1,487,000,000 gallons are available down to elevation 55. The storage dam. located 6.5 miles northwest of the center of city, is of concrete, 30 feet high, with overflow at elevation 73. It is so constructed that it may be raised to elevation 95. The water is discharged from the dam to the bed of the river, in which it flows for a distance of 4.5 miles to Jaeger’s dam, a rubble stone structure about three feet high at elevation 27. Above this dam is a concrete headwall provided with coarse screens and admits the water to two 48-inch concrete conduits, which lead to screen wells in a gate chamber, from which a 60-inch reinforced concrete conduit leads to the raw water suction well, a concrete structure, 13 feet in diameter and 34 feet deep, in which low water stands at elevation 24 and high water at 44. The purification works are located about two miles northwest of center of city on the north bank of Scioto river. Raw water is raised by low-lift pumps to purification works, where it is softened, settled and filtered, finally reaching either of two filtered water reservoirs. The settling basins, six in number, cover an area of 3.3 acres, are about 20 feet deep and have a capacity of 15,000,000 gallons when filled to elevation 61. There are ten concrete tanks, each with a net filtering area of .025 acres, and a normal capacity of 3,000,000 gallons for 24 hours. The filtered water reservoirs are 220 by 214 feet, and have a capacity of 10,000,000 gallons when filled to elevation 50. The Scioto river pumping station was built in 1908 and located adjacent to the purification works. The filtered water suction well is a concrete structure 26.5 feet deep, divided into three separate wells, fed from filtered water reservoirs through a 60-inch concrete conduit. There are three low-lift engine-driven, volute pumps, two of the Harrisburg type, with a capacity of 20,000,000 gallons each, and one of the DeLavell type with a capacity of 25,000,000 gallons; and three high-lift triple expansion vertical engines, two with a capacity of 20,000,000 gallons and one with a capacity of 25,000,000 gallons. The boilers are stoker fired, and consist of two batteries Babcock and Wilcox boilers of 600 horse power and battery of Heine boilers of 600 horse power.
The year ended December 31, 1917, was a successful one, financially, for the division of water, notwithstanding the increased cost of material and per diem cost of labor, as well as for the material decrease in the number of new accounts usually added annually.
Alluding to the subject of supplying water, Superintendent O’Shaugnessy says: “The consumers who pay for the full amount of water passed through the meter cannot be reproached for creating additional costs for the division of water to meet, for they provide the means for its payment. But institution supplied water, be it public or private, giving no remuneration to the division of water, places an unfair burden upon the general water consumer, and the money procured from him for water should be utilized only for maintaining and extending the division of water as a self-supporting institution and should not be diverted indirectly towards the maintenance of institutions dependent on taxation, charity or sale of commodity, for support. However, I wish to be understood as not being opposed to supplying water free of charge to worthy and purely charitable institutions nor to public institutions without available funds; but since the city charter provides a fair and equitable manner in which this may be done, I am opposed to continuing the old and manifestly unfair method of saddling the cost of it directly on the water consumer.” Mr. O’Shaugnessy states that the hardness of the winter during the previous year was higher than at any time since the construction of the purification and softening works. He explains that this is due to the impossibility of procuring sufficient quantities of soda ash, owing to its large use in the manufacture of muntions, and asserts that it is highly probable that there will be a scarcity of it as long as the war lasts.
Additional Meters Set on Main Line Services During the Year 1917.
While, according to the Superintendent, there were 1,030 additional services connected to during the year, this is 811 less than the number connected to during the preceding year. In addition to the new services installed, the following work was done by the service subdivision: Services placed in improved streets, 1,052; services renewed, 1,138; services installed in villages, 145; service leaks repaired, 235; service boxes located and repaired, 872. Kind of pipe used; Lead, galvanized and cast iron. Sizes: One-half inch and up to eight inches. Number of taps added during year: 950 (sold and given number), 35 also sold that had been previously numbered; 44 resold that had been numbered and abandoned and one ferrule, and of the 1,052 placed in improved streets, 39 are included in those sold and given number. Numbered services on record, 39,494. Unsold services in streets, 10,418. Of the numbered services 36,768 are active and used as basis of active accounts, etc., while 1858 inactive and 868 unconnected are not recognized in any computation in this report. Of the 36,768 active services, 35,452 are metered, including 13 elevators, and 1,316 are unmetered, which includes 1,192 revenue producing services, 60 municipal free services, 55 ferrules and nine water stations. The percentage of services metered is 96.42.