Freeport Waterworks System.
The waterworks system of Freeport, Ill., consists of a gravity and direct pressure system. The pumphouse, situated on the river bank, about half a mile north of the centre of the city, is equiped as follows: One Knowles compound pump, capacity 1,750,000 gal. per 24 hours; one I lolly compound crank and flywheel, high-duty pump, capacity 3,000,000 gal. per 24 hours. The standpipe has a capacity of 115,000 gal. It is 88 ft. high, and the base is 112 ft. above the pumping station and 90 ft. above the congested district of the city. The ordinary pressure averages from 00 to so lb. per sq. in. This can he increased to 100 lh. for fire purposes. The average daily consumption amounts to 1,334,000 gal. There are 175 hydrants set throughout the city, twenty-five in the congested district, i here are 31½ miles of mains throughout the entire city. The supply is furnished through an 18 in. supply main from the plant to North Galena avenue. The supply is then distributed through twelve 8-in. and 6-in. mains. The congested district is supplied with 8in. and G-iti. mains, and the residence district with 6-in. The city is not properly supplied with hydrants; there are set only 175, instead of at least 241. In the congested district are only twentylive, instead of forty. The number of miles of mains in Freeport, however, is 31.51, while the average number in other cities is 29.28. In this respect hreeport leads other cities. The average distance between each hydrant is 937 ft., while in other cities it is 640 ft. At the same time the waterworks system is in excellent condition, well managed, and the supply of water in case of a conflagration is practically inexhaustible. There should he laid an additional 18-in. main from the waterworks plant to North Galena avenue, and, in addition, there should be a 12-in. main surrounding the city as far as the Third ward, which would reinforce all of the present mains. This would guarantee a supply of water in case the present main should break. Instead of there being only the one main, there should be two. Sixtv-six additional hydrants are needed, and in the congested district one should he set on each block. 1 lie large manufacturing plants, especially, are not surrounded by an adequate number of hydrants, and, in justice to these interests the proper number of hydrants should he installed to protect them. The great difficulty in carrying out these recommendations, however, lies in the fact that the franchise of the local waterworks company has only three years to run. The company, therefore, cannot be expected to do what is needed, without some assurance as to the future, nor could it reduce the price per hydrant to a figure which would permit the city to equip itself with an additional number which would bring it up to the average. If the water question could be settled, either through an extension of the present company’s franchise or through municipal ownership, then the improvements could be made.