ROCKFORD’S ABUNDANT WATER SUPPLY.
ROCKFOKD, ILL., boasts a water supply which (says Supt. Kimball) is “ample to accommodate a growing and expanding system for many years to come.” The Mead system keeps fully up to the high standard of excellence which it has maintained since its inauguration during the summer of 1898. It can be relied upon to furnish by direct pumping 7,000,000 gallons of artesian water daily for a population of 31,051. The daily pumpage on a yearly basis average was 2,597,311 gallons—over eighly-live gallons per capita to all within the city limits; in reality more than 100 gallons per capita a day, Blnco a large percentage of the citizens does not use the city’s water service. This large allowance points to the more extended installation of meters, of which there are at present in service about 270, of which the superintendent says that
the results gained by their installation, in stopping wasteful practices, in discovering leaking pipes and fixtures, and in regulating absurd flat rates have more and more justified tlie wisdom and justice of their use. I would emphatically recommend that no backward step be taken in this direction, but that meters be placed ns rapidly as possitde in the future, until all factories, stores, fiats, business houses, and residences having sewer connection and using water motors are supplied with this method of measuring and selling city water.
Supt. Kimball, in view of the city’s bountiful water supply, also urges the extension of the system of water mains, and the substitution of larger, for the many small lines of water pipe (some seven miles of pipe being only two-inch or even less, and many laid in the best and most thickly settled residence streets in Kockford). These caunot give proper fire protection, and the districts referred to are imiierfeclly furnished with fire hydrants, which are supplied from laterals running from adjacent streets, or are without any immediate fire protection at all. Many of these pipes, also, are of wrought iron, and have become almost useless from decay. The pumping engines are as follows; A Holly quadrttplex, capacity, 2,000,009 gallons—Installed twenty-five years ago. when the works were first built, but, though still In occasional service,it is cumtiersome and expensive in operation; a small 3,000,000-gallon Gaskill—installed in 1885, and in perfect condition; and a 6,000,000-gallon Gaskill—installed in 1891. It is recommended that the Holly and the smaller Gaskill be sold and a modem pumping engine of from 7,000,000 to 8,000,000 gallons be purchased in their stead. The total revenue from water rates during 1000 was $38,919.92—an increase of over $2,500 over that of the preceding year. The total pumpage in gallons for the year was 948,113,010, against an avcruge pressure of fifty-three pounds. The total amount of coal consumed in pounds was 4,041,600, costing $4,775.92 ; cost for each million gallons, $5.04—4,896 pounds being consumed for each million ; cost of pumping by high and low-service, on pumplng station expenses, $12,395.94 ; for each million gallons to mains, $13.07 ; cost of pumping by high and low-service, on total maintenance, $20,830.01; for each million gallons to mains, $21.97; high and low-service, coal cost for each million gallons, $5.04. The total revolutions of No. 1 engine (Holly), were 51,360; of No.2 engine (Gaskill), 238,460: of No. 3 engine (Gaskill), 4,579,530. Total number of fire alarms received, 124; tire pressure maintained for forty-one hours (average pounds pressure carried, eighty; average time for each alarm, twenty minutes); average depth of water maintained in reservoir, 16.94 feet. There are 00.26 miles of piping laid; 384 hydrants set; 648 valves; thirteen water tanks; ten drinking fountains; fifteen streetsprinklers’standpipes; 162 services. The members of the fire and water committee of Rockford are: Aidermen Harbison, Shepherd, Clarke, Olson, and Pearson; superintendent, W. M. Kimball; engineer, Charles W. Calkins; clerk, Clara J. Morgan.
The illustrations accompanying this article show the pumping station from the east bank of Rock river; Waterworks park, west from Well street; and Waterworks drive, north from Beach street.