NEW WATER WORKS AT ASTORIA, L, I.
The new water works system at Astoria, L. L., consists of a diverting weir of masonry at Bear creek, with entry chamber, headgates, etc., a settling basin of masonry, with screens, masonry, weir, and inclosing building. There is a pipe-line composed of wood, 7 1-2 miles long, made of 18-inch fir staves, with steel bands; 3 miles of 16-inch No. 10 and No. 12—according to pressure—riveted steel pipe; and 1 mile of 14-inch No. 12 riveted steel pipe. The capacity of the reservoir is 6,250,100 gallons. The distribution is on the Columbia side of the peninsula, and to it the water is conveyed by an 18-inch pipe: a tunnel 1,200 feet long passing thrtnigh the ridge between the reservoir and the city at a depth of 115 feet below the surface.
The elevation above tide-water of the diverting point on Bear creek is 589 feet, the slave pipe is used under a maximum pressure of 165 feet,with a gradient fall of 2 feet in 1,000. The steel pipe is used under the heavy pressures, which reach a maximum of 290 feet. It has a fall in the hydraulic gradient of 5 feet in 1,000 for the 16-inch pipe. The end of the main line conduit is a mile east of the new reservoir, at the head of the 14-inch pipe, at an elevation of 426 feet, so that all the peninsula below this elevation will practically be supplied by gravity. In the 14-inch pipe leading from the 426-foot elevation to the reservoir, which is built at a flow-line elevation of 282 t-2 feet, is a reserve head of 83 feet,which is to be used at the reservoir for the development of power. About 50 net horse power is the result. This power is to be employed for the operation of an electric lighting plant. At a future period the necessary pumping plant, to be driven by electricity, will be installed, to be used by day for pumping water to a smaller reservoir to be located on a high elevation to supply an extremely high service. The building for this plant is erected, and all the fixtures are in readiness for placing the machine. Thus every part of the city will be supplied with water, though the elevations cover a range of 600 feet without the expenditure of one dollar for full. The completed plan contemplates the construction of a small storage dam on Bear creek, where 50,000, gallons can be reserved for consumption during the dryer weeks of the year, thus bringing a minimum available supply up to the designed capacity of the pipe line. This was expected to have a carrying capacity of 4,050,000 gallons, in twenty-four hours, and by actual measurement since completion carries 4 150,000 gallons. The reservoir has a lining of 6 inches of concrete on slopes and bottom, finished as to the bottom with two coals of asphalt, and on the slopes with a coat of asphalt and finishing surface of another coat of asphalt. The slope lining is topped with a masonry parapet, supporting a neat iron picket fence; the slopes will Ite seeded to grass. Provision against the expansion and cracking of the concrete lining is made by placing it in squares separated by asphalt joints. I’he tunnel is driven through 250 feet of solid basalt rock, its remaining 950 feet being in the argillaceous shale of this locality through which material is constructed a solid concrete lining. The distribution, as now constructed, consists of the lower of the four services, which will eventually be installed. The lower of these two is to be ordinarily supplied from the old reservoir, and the higher from the new. The lower reservoir being insufficient in elevation to afford a really superior fire protection directly from the hydrants, tire-gates are installed between two services, which, when opened, make them practically one, thus securing the pressure from the upper reservoir, while the lower is automatically cut out by the back pressure. These gates are both opened and closed from the tire station by the simple opening and closing of a stop-cock in a small service pipe, through the agency of a specially designed hydraulic gate governor. The city will through this means, and through street mains of ample size and an abundance of hydrants, have quite an ample fire’protection. The street mains in the low service are of cast iron on the ground and of “kalameine” steel on the trestled streets. In the high service, the pipe removed from the old works after being cleaned, redipped, and tested under hydrostatic pressure, will be used. In all there will be about Smiles of street mains, ranging in size from 6 to 18 inches, laid in the new distributing system.
T he total cost of the work was $220,717.17, including $33,220.60 for the wood stave pipe line; $29,172.75 for the steel pipe; $24,426.71 for the reservoir; $8,911.37 for the power house and gate-well, with fixtures; $7,321.61 for the tunnel; $39,961.70 for the distributing system, and the estimated approximate cost of completing work, i’he money has been raised by the issue of bonds.
The whole work has been most efficiently and most economically carried out by the city’s water commissioners, W. W. Barker, Samuel Elmore, J. Q. A. Bowlby, H. G. Van Dusen, E. II. Fisher. W. E. Dement, and C. S. Wright. The chief engineer, the designer and superintendent of the construction of the system, is S. D. Schuyler, consulting engineer, and George A. Shields.now superintendent of the works,in charge of the distribution.