Gunpowder River Storage Reservoir

Gunpowder River Storage Reservoir

Baltimore cannot make use of its new water supply from the Gunpowder river storage rcservoir till a conduit of steel has been built from that reservoir to the present one, half a mile further down. Besides that the 12-foot conduit which stretches in a straight line from that at Loch Raven to Lake Montebello must be relined. The total cost will be about $500,000. The proposed new conduit will be 11 feet in diameter and lined inside, as it will be covered outside with concrete. The inside lining will be six inches thick and the tube will be laid just beneath the surface of the ground along the bank. It was at first intended that it should be laid round the hill, but as now designed it will save $100,000 in construction and besides being equally serviceable will avoid the costly task of boring through solid rock for a great part of the way. The present seven-mile conduit is 12 feet in diameter and for several miles is in the solid rock which forms its wall. These, of course, need not be relined. That portion of it whose walls are of brick will be lined with six inches of concrete, leaving the remainder of the conduit large enough to carry all the water needed by the city. The relining will be neither easy nor unaccompanied with danger, and before the work is started all the storage reservoirs that hold the city’s supply will be filled to their utmost capacity, as, also, will be the high-service reservoir. To do this the pumps will he kept going day and night and the great gates at Loch Raven will be kept closed for probably eight or ten days at a time. The liners will then be let down into the conduit to begin the task of relining. They will work for several days and will then stop to allow the concrete lining to harden. Meanwhile the consumption in the city will be kept down to the minimum; street sprinkling will be curtailed and all preventable waste will be avoided. As the supply becomes low enough to reach the danger mark men and tools will be withdrawn, the great gates will be re-opened and the reservoirs refilled, after which work will be resumed. The danger to the workers is obvious. If the guard gates at Loch Raven should be open for only a few inches or anything happen to them the underground force would be caught like rats in a trap and drowned without hope of rescue.

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