SPOKANE WATER NEWS.
Specially written for FIRE AND WATER ENGINEERING.
SPOKANE, WASH., May 8, 1906.
The Washington Waterpower company, of Spokane, is actively building its high-tension transmission line from Spokane into the Palouse country, and current for power and lighting purposes is expected to be available for distribution in June. A number of towns will use power from Spokane.
Jay P. Graves, head of the Inland Empire Railway company, recently incorporated for $20,000,000, admits that he and associates contemplate the development of some of the vast waterpowers which they have recently acquired. Otto Weile, an engineer of Spokane, will go to Kettle Falls, on the Columbia, in a few days to examine the power there, which is supposed to amount to 80.000 or ioo,ooo-horsepower. Mr. Graves already has a franchise which will permit him to put in an electric power and lighting system in Spokane in rivalry to that of the Washington Waterpower company.
The electric power plants at Newport and Bonner’s Ferry, Idaho, are to be united, under the name Northern Electric Light company, which has been incorporated, with a capital stock of $35,000. A. M. Winston and M. A. Folsom, of Spokane, are the incorporators and owners.
The Home Telephone company, of this city, has begun work on the construction of its city system. Charles S. Zahn, a telephone engineer with the Empire Electric company, is in the city in charge of the work. A. Andrews is purchasing material and supplies.
Mayor Herman J. Rossi, of Wallace, Idaho, is attempting to have the Western Union Telegraph company and the Rocky Mountain Bell Telephone company use the same wires in that city.
A telephone company at Medical Lake, Wash., formerly a mutua’l concern, with twenty-seven phones, has been incorporated, and is putting in a modern system. The monthly rental is to be $1.25 for residences and $1.50 for business houses. The long distance rate to Spokane—sixteen miles—is fifteen cents.
Citizens of Echo Valley in Stevens county are putting in a telephone system that will connect the neighborhood with Colville and Spokane.
The Nez Perce Co-operative Telephone company will receive a franchise from the city of Grangeville. Idaho, provided the company will use forty-five-foot poles, so as not to interfere with the wires of the Pacific States Telephone company.
Manager J. E. McGillivray. of the Pacific States Telephone company at Walla Walla, announces a substantial reduction in rates on the rural lines between that place and Spokane, the service being furnished for $3 a year, when the customer furnishes his own instrument. Under this promise many extensions will be added at once.
The Tumalum Mutual Telephone company has been organised at Freewater, Ore., and will he built between that place and Walla Walla. F. J. Bodefelt is president.
The Pacific States Telephone company will spend $50,000 in making its building on Wall street in Spokane fireproof. The framework of the building will be replaced as far as possible with iron and fireproof brick. 1 he present partitions will be removed and replaced with standard partitions. Flameproof wire and heat coils will be established, and many other changes will be made.
The British Columbia Construction and Distributing company. Limited, is the new name under which the West Kootenay Power and Light company of Grand Forks, B. C.. will be known in the future. The company will continue the construction of its line as far west as Boundary fields, the western extreme of its fiftymile limit, according to its present charter. The company will ask an extension of its charter from the next Provincial legislature.
The electric power and light plant of the Palmer Mountain Tunnel and Development company at Loomis is completed, and that town is supplied with a lighting system from the company’s plant.
‘The lift-bridge at Riverside, Wash., over the Okanogan river is in serious danger of being torn down by the government engineers, who have reported that it is unsafe to navigation. It is the only cantilever bridge on the Okanogan river. The county commissioners say they will spend no more money on it, and that the government may tear it down, if it wants to. The bridge has been a hoodoo since its construction in the winter of 1904. When it was first opened, with the coming of the steamer up the river in the spring of 1905. one span was broken. It has had other mishaps since, and it is said it was not built according to government plans.
Henry W. Mahaney, of Spokane, has been granted a franchise by the city of Great Falls, Mont., to erect and maintain a plant for the manufacture and distribution of illuminating and fuel gas and by-products. The grantee is to pay to the city two per cent, of the gross receipts. The work of erecting the plant must he begun in eighteen months. The franchise provides that gas must he furnished at $1.75 per 1,000 feet, with privileges for a reduction in the price when the output reaches certain amounts, the city to have the privilege of purchasing after fifteen years.
The town council of Ritzville, Wash., favors a plan recommended by Professor Waller, of the Washington State college to dig a number of shallow wells on the flat and connect them with a series of pumps. The town is sufficiently supplied with water at present; but its growth will require a greater supply.
Professor O. L. Waller, of the Washington State college at Pullman, under the authorisation of the town council of Sunnyside, Wash., has prepared plans and specifications for an electric light and water system for Sunnyside.
Never before in the history of Spokane was there such a demand for extensions on the city’s water mains. The city will not build mains until the revenue for the consumption of water on the new main is equivalent to twelve per cent, of the cost. In most cases where new mains are petitioned for, the revenue more than equals this amount. In some cases where it does not equal this amount, the petitioners are allowed to lay the main and connect with the city water, paying the regular water rents, with the understanding that, as soon as the revenue equals the necessary twelve per cent, of the cost, the city will pay the consumers what it cost them to lay the main, without interest. Spokane obtains a handsome revenue from its water system, in addition to the cost of maintenance, extensions and interest on the bonds.
The Washington Pipe and Foundry company, of Tacoma, offers to put up a $1,000 check, to be forfeited if it does not bid at least $10,000 less than the price for which the contract was awarded recently for the new water system of Walla Walla. ‘The company agrees to do this, if Walla Walla will readvertise the bids.
Mayor Walter Reed, of North Yakima, has appropriated 1,000 cubic feet of water in the Natchez river for power for that city. Tor domestic purposes he has appropriated fifty cubic feet one-half mile above the mouth of the Tieton river. ‘The notice states that the purposes of the appropriations are “to supply the city with water for drinking, domestic use, power, irrigation, fire protection, sanitary and all other municipal purposes, and to supply the inhabitants between the points of diversion and the city with power.” These appropriations are made, in conformity with a resolution passed at a recent city council meeting, favoring the municipal ownership of water and light plants. It is not yet decided how the city will raise the funds for these improvements.
George H. Heller, of Wallace, Idaho, who has been attempting to secure a franchise for a water system in that town, says the franchise ordinance as amended is too severe to permit him to put in the system. It was amended to require him to pay $500 in cash to the city, and to lay a ten-inch main on certain streets, construct a reservoir, with a loo-foot fall, to hold not less than 40.000 cubic feet of water, the reservoir to lie kept full at all times, and any failure to be kept full to work a forfeiture of the franchise. At the expiration of twenty-five years the whole system is to revert to the city, without compensation to Mr. Heller.
Owing to the scarcity of coal caused by the practical strike of the miners, oil is being used as the motive power for the pumping machinery at Kansas City, Mo. The cost of the oil is just double that of coal.