THE LITTLE RIVER WATERWORKS COMPLETED
With the turning on of water from the new Little River system, Springfield, Mass., has now a very effective supply both for fire protection and domestic use. The water was let into the distribution mains on the 21st of December, and as was expected, it has proved eminently satisfactory. The gauges have recorded 130 pounds steady pressure since, and they remain at that figure with slight variation. One of the chief advantages of the Little River supply was to furnish high-pressure streams by gravity, and this has been accomplished. In explanation of the proposed work. Mr. Elbert E. Lockridge, engineer of the system, says: “An added call for a new supply was made because of the insufficient height of the Ludlow reservoir.” A plan which was agreed upon was to procure legislative permission to take the Little River supply and complete the Ludlow filter, both of which were accomplished, the filter being finished in July, 1906. In recommending the Little River system Mr. Lockridge adds: “While at present the requisite storage will be obtained from reservoirs on tributaries. a site is available which will supply enough water ultimately to supply the city until it shall become three or more times its present size. There are sites for filtration of the entire supply without loss of head or pressure in the city, as would have been necessary had the Ludlow supply been filtered without pumping. There is also within 4 1/4 miles of the city a site for a distributing reservoir. At the present time, when an excessive draft is made on the present system, we have a very considerable loss in friction on two main pipes of between 11 and 12 miles in length; while with the new system we will have a reservoir which will be near enough, or at least much nearer than the old supply, so that a fire or other excessive draft may be maintained without great loss of pressure.” At the Springfield meeting of the New England Waterworks Association, Mr. Allen Hazen, consulting engineer for the new work, said: “The design of this supply has presented some questions of the greatest interest. One of these is as to the most desirable pressure or elevation at which to deliver the water in Springfield. Most of the Little River watershed has a great elevation. The main dam which it is proposed to build some time in the future, will have its flow-line some 900 feet above tide. It is physically possible to bring the Little River water into Springfield at any pressure that might be desired. It would certainly be possible physically to bring the water in with a pressure of 300 pounds per square inch, although it would cost a great deal of money to secure such a pressure. And further he adds: “The proposed Little River works are designed all the way through with reference to extension. A 15,000,000-gallon plant is now being built, but everything is designed for an ultimate extension of double, or more than double, that capacity. The Little River water is to be filtered, although it comes front a hilly and almost mountainous watershed that has but little population upon it. Filtering the water adds something like $300,000 to the cost of the project.It insures the delivery of a water of greater attractiveness from a physical standpoint, and it largely eliminates possible danger of disease which might come from accidental contamination of the sources. The filtered water is to be stored in a covered reservoir, that is to say, in the distribution reservoir of Proven Mountain. Covering this reservoir is also something of a novelty for a supply of this character. The cover is provided to keep out the light and to prevent the growth of organisms in the reservoir, which growths tend to reduce the quality of the water.”
The system, which is now practically complete, cost within the estimated amount of $2,000,000. The new supply is brought from the Little River gorge, 14 miles west of Springfield. A concrete dam 65 ft. high was constructed in the gorge and from this the water was carried in a tunnel through Cobble mountain to the filtration beds at Mundale. This tunnel is one mile long and is lined with concrete. From Mundale the water is taken in a 40-inch conduit to the reservoir on Proven mountain. Here 26,000,000 gallons is impounded midway between Westfield and West Springfield. From there the water is carried in a 40-inch main to Springfield, crossing under the Connecticut river in two 20-inch lines. The intake dam in the Little River gorge has a capacity of 60,000,000 gallons, and above that on Borden Brook is a reservoir of 1,000,000,000 gallons. Previous to 1906 the Ludlow supply was found to be unsatisfactory, and as ehe city continued to grow it became apparent that some action should be taken to either improve the Ludlow water or construct new works. In 1905 the city authorities of Springfield agreed to filter the water at the Ludlow reservoir, and at the same time obtain legislative permission to take a new supply from the Westfield Little River. In round numbers the total Ludlow sources have some twenty square miles of watershed and Little River fifty square miles. Both are about the same distance from the city, the Ludlow source, east and the Little River source, west. The Little River watershed, as stated before, covers about fifty square miles, and within the area, located in the town of Blandford, a large basin is formed which is fed by two small brooks. Pebble and Borden, Pebble being the larger. These two brooks run finally into Little River. By damming up the lower end of this basin, the Borden Brook ,capable of holding 2,000,000,000 gallons, is formed. The construction was started in the middle and worked in both directions. Consequently the dam, that would divert the water from the bed of Little River toward the city, was made the starting point. The Culgin-Pace Company, of New York, received the contract for this dam, and also for boring the tunnel through Cobble mountain, east of it. Before the work was complete, this company failed, and the Fred. T. Ley Company, of Springfield, continued it. This dam, which is 280 ft. long and 80 ft. high, is constructed of concrete masonry. The tunnel is lined with concrete, the bore being 6 ft. 3 inches. The contract for the sedimentation basin and the filters was awarded to the Charles R. Gow Company, of Boston. There are 6 filterbeds, and the sedimentation basin is forked by a dike 750 ft. long and about 38 ft. high. The filters are covered over with concrete roofing, filled with sand, and are at present in operation. For the Proven mountain reservoir the Baker Contracting Company, of New York, was awarded the contract. Recently the Fred. T. Ley Company took up part of this work. The reservoir covers an area of 288 by 321 ft., and has a capacity of 16,000,000 gallons. The T. A. Gillespie Company, of New York, received the contract for the pipe line from the filters to Proven mountain, and from there to the Connecticut river, covering about 12 miles. The most difficult part ot this work was the crossing of the Westfield river. The Borden brook contract was given to Coleman Bros., of Boston, and the big dam was completed in the specified time. The T. A. Scott Company, of New London, Conn., have also completed the lines of pipe crossing the Connecticut river. With the system just completed with much satisfaction, the city of Springfield will have an inexhaustible supply of water for fire protection and domestic use. The former, with a highpressure to meet general conditions of fire extinguished, and the latter, primarily, form an uncontaminated watershed, but in its filtered state, as pure and wholesome water as may be found in any important city in the country.
High Pressure at Jacksonville.
The new high pressure fire system with mains laid on all the streets of the business section of the city of Jacksonville, Fla., is now almost ready for service. The new fire protection afforded by the high-pressure pumps and mains was made necessary by the rapid growth of the city, and the number of tall buildings that have sprung up in the last few years, and when the plant is completed will afford ample protection to the highest building in the city. The pump-house is nearly completed. The pumps are electrically driven, two motors of 375 horse-power each have been installed and are expected to develop enough power to maintain a pressure of about 300 pounds at the pumping station. The cable feed wire was laid several weeks ago and is ready for service. This large wire was laid underground, and is directly connected with the municipal electric plant. It carries a pressure of over 2,000 volts, and will furnish enough power to keep the two pumps going at full speed during a fire.
Water Company with a Perpetual Franchise.
The Flatbush Water Company has a perpetual franchise to furnish water to one of the richest suburbs of New York. Flatbush is convenient to the subway station in Brooklyn, and it is growing more rapidly as a residential section than probably any other within such easy distance of the business centre of Manhattan. The present waterworks administration considers Flatbush requires more fire protection and so does the Flatbush Water Company, but that corporation with its perpetual franchise can prohibit the city from duplicating its mains in the large territory it controls. Deputy Water Commissioner Cozier declares that there is no question of the pressing need for additional water in Flatbush, and recommends a high pressure salt water service for protection against fire. When he indorsed the proposal of the Prospect Park South Association for additional mains, he expressed it as his opinion that the privilege enjoyed by the Flatbush Waterworks Company would stand in the way. Fortescue Metcalf, representing John Z. Lott, the president of the company, says that the company would not object to the laying of high pressure salt water mains by the city, but that the company would stand on its rights, under its franchise, to give an exclusive service of water for all ordinary purposes within its territory, but would not regard salt water mains as invading its privileges. Investigation discloses that the company took care to protect itself against invasion of its territory by the city when the town of Flatbush was annexed to the city of Brooklyn, 15 years ago. The annexation act, Chapter 356 of the laws of 1894, included the following provision: “The said City of Brooklyn shall not distribute or furnish water for consumption or use within said territory, or lay any pipes or mains for the distribution or supply of water within said territory, until the expiration of the charter of said waterworks company (the Flatbush Waterworks Company), or until the said city shall acquire the property of said company for public use by condemnation, power to so acquire the same at any time being hereby vested in the said city.” The annexation act provided that the rights of the Waterworks Company, under its contract with the old town of Flatbush, should continue after annexation. These rights give it power to supply water to the Twenty-ninth Ward, or the former town of Flatbush, and to collect the water taxes. There is no record, either, of any franchise held by the Flatbush Waterworks Company in the office of the division of franchises of the Board of Estimate. It appears the old town records were incomplete, as a rule, and while the office had endeavored to secure transcripts of all the records, it has not been very successful. The division of franchises, however, has a note that the Flatbush Waterworks Company filed its certificate of incorporation in Kings County as required by law, on June 14, 1881. This valuable property must soon belong to the city the same as the systems on Staten Island, and no doubt the Flatbush company will make every use of its “perpetual” franchise to keep the selling price high. The question now is would it not be expedient for the city to acquire the property now? If it installs a fire protection system it will only assist the company to save its supply for domestic use and, no doubt, ultimately lead to legal disputes later on.
The Water Service of New London, Conn.
New London, Conn., with a population of upwards of 17,000 inhabitants, receives its supply from Lake Kononede, a body of 600,000,000 gallons and Barnes reservoir, of 170,000,000 gallons capacity. The distributing reservoir has a capacity of 500,000 gallons, and the mode of supply being gravity and pumping to high service. There arc three pumps, either of which can be run by water or electric power and if necessary, two can be operated at the same time, increasing the capacity to 800,000 gallons per day. A new pump of 578,400 gallons daily capacity, was installed last year. The water consumption for the year ending September 3, 1909, was 980,267,000 gallons, of which 122,576,000 gallons was pumped to high service. This figures out 657 gallons, for each tap in the city per day, or 122 gallons daily per capita of the population served. Distribution is effected by 687 miles of mains, cement-lined and cast-iron, from 4 to 24 inches diameter, controlled by 535 stop gates and serving 342 hydrants. The number of services is 4.086 and there are 645 meters in use, an increase of 78 during the year, and giving a proportion of 16 per cent, of metered services. The meters in use include 281 Trident pattern, 145 Empire, 57 Nash, 53 Crown and the remainder of various makes in numbers of 30 or less. In accordance with the amended rules, there are many more meters still to be set. The amount of water supplied through metered services during the year was 315,422,000 gallons. Systematic inspection of fixtures is conducted and during the year 112 notices were sent out applying to such cases. Superintendent Richards, who is a firm believer in the metering of water supplies, in his report quotes various cases in which the installation of meters would be justifiable, and recommends the repeal of a recent amendment to the rules, allowing families to be supplied at schedule rates on premises where all other users are metered, as permitting the most flagrant wastage of water without hinderance. He referred to instances found where in a stable supplied through a meter the water for washing carriages was taken from a faucet supplying the family and not metered. Other instances where the water supply to saloon was metered and the closet for family use adjoining the saloon and supplied outside of the meter was running continually. In another case where water was supplied on a premises through a meter, the water for use of hose was taken from the adjoining premises owned by the same party. There are 21 special fire services. 7 on sprinklers and the remainder on hydrants, established at consumers’ expense and used only for fire purposes. The financial report shows receipts from all sources of $135,980; expenditures, for maintenance $35,605, for construction $17,544. The department paid over to the city $30,000, loaned the sewer department $10,000 and had an unexpended balance at the close of the year of $42,830. Inasmuch as the department derives no income from water used by the municipality, outside of a yearly rent for hydrants, at $40 each, that returned $13,680, $900 for fountains, $2,500 for street watering and $1,500 for public buildings, making $18,580 in all, the report must be re garded as eminently satisfactory and the water works of New London is a valuable municipal asset.
Standard Hose Couplings.
The special committee of the National Fire Protection Association on Standard Hose couplings and hydrant fittings for public fire service, of which Mr. F. M. Griswold is chairman, has issued the following circular letter to chief engineers, which it is hoped, may meet with their early co-operation:
DEAR SIR: This committee is particularly anxious to verify its information in relation to the dimension details of the hose and hydrant couplings now in use in your city, in order that it may thus complete a full official record of such couplings in use throughout the country, and at the same time thereby complete its tabulation of towns which are fitted out with the “National Standard Couplings.” recently adopted and approved by all of the leading organizations controlling the installation and use of fire department and waterworks apparatus.
This committee will, therefore, consider it self under deep and lasting obligations to you. if you will kindly fill out, sign and return to the undersigned the attached blank at such time as may best suit your convenience and pleasure. Your very truly,
F. M. GRISWOLD,
Accompanying the letter is a blank form to be filled in, and should any of the readers of this journal not have received one, they may be obtained by writing the chairman at 50 Cedar street, New York. It is very important that this information be received as early as possible to enable the committee to prepare its report with as little delay as possible. Therefore, the attention of the fire engineers is particularly directed to the matter.
Every year the Westinghouse Company, of Pittsburg, issues a neat pocket diary which is much appreciate by the waterworks fraternity. This year the diary is as complete as ever and it has an excellent tan leather cover. The useful tables and information it contains, besides the calendars for 1910 and 1911, and memoranda blanks for each day in the year make it a valuable companion for the vest pocket.
A press dispatch from Clarinda,. Ia., says the water company has ordered that all services be metered on pain of having the supply cut off.
The city of Jacksonville, Fla., has 4,026 meters in use and 5,897 services. This makes 68.27 per cent. of the services supplied through meters.
Bids for 480 meters were opened on Dccembre 14, when bids were made for Lambert, King, Keystone, Trident, Worthington and Arnik brands. Decision was reserved for two weeks.
A large meter that is to measure the water supplied from Fish creek to Rome, N. Y., has been successfully set and it is expected that Rome will be drawing Fish creek water early in January.
On December 25, the District Commissioners of Washington, D C., awarded a contract to Thomson Meter Co. of Brooklyn, N. Y., for 1,000 5/8-inch Lambert meters, with the privilege of increasing the order 100 per cent, should the department so desire.
Los Angeles, Cal., was supplying, on June 30, 1909, according to Superintendent of Meter and Service Department George Read, 53,065 paying services, of which 30,049 were metered. At the above date 57 per cent, of the services in the city were metered and about 63 per cent, of the total revenue collcted was for metered water.
Of a total of $51,950 receipts from all sources, reported by Superintendent T. D. Stinson, Aurora. I11., $41,381 came from metered water services. Superintendent Stinson believes that the water supplied to water troughs and public buildings should be metered and paid for and that an annual rental should be paid for fire hydrants.
According to the latest available report, covering the year ending September 30, 1909, the city of Providence, R. L, with 26,959 services, had in use 23,736 water meters. Of these 12,297 were Crown. 5,782 Thomson. 2,822 Empire. 1,692 Ball & Fitts, the remainder of other well-known patterns; 274 of these meters were sel during the year and only eight were discontinued.
Of 1.628 meters in use December 31, 1908, in McKeesport, Pa., an increase of 93 compared with 1907; 769 are Crown, 558 Empire, 118 Pittsburg and Keystone. Of the total recepts for water supplied, amounting to $64,730, the sum of $26,824 was for metered services. Meters are owned by the city and consumers pay a small annual rental for their use, according to their size.
Trouble is sometimes experienced with the metering of the water supplied to fire lines, owing to the alleged reduction in pressure caused by the introduction of the meter. As a consequence, the water from the fire lines left unmetered for this alleged reason is often used for other than fire purposes, the metered lines being “given a rest.” The Horsey Detector is a device for use on fire lines, that does not in the least reduce the pressure or quantity of the water passing through it.
Hartford, Conn., with a population of 80,000, is one of the large cities that has to carefully husband its water resources, which are liable to be affected by climatic influences. Under the circumstances, it is not surprising to find a practically universal meterage system in force; with 11,199 services, Hartford has in operation 11,047 meters. Nearly one-half of these, to be exact 5,071 at last report, were Empire, 3,468 Trident, 1,561 Lambert and the remainder of other brands in much smaller numbers.
Explaining why the installation of water meters for domestic services is the most equitable plan of charging for water where reasonable care is taken to prevent waste. W. H. Richards, engineer and superintendent of the New London, Conn., waterworks, in a recent report says: “The minimum rate where a meter is used is $5 a year in addition to the rent of the meter. For this amount 31,500 gallons of water can be used, which is sufficient for the needs of one family with hath and closet, which under schedule rates would be charged $8.50 per year. Experience has shown that no two places use the same quantity of water even if they have exactly the same fixtures, and as a matter of equity, they should not pay the same rates.” New London aims to meter all the water sent out and last year increased the number of meters in use in the city by 78, making 654 installed on September 1, 1909. The amount of water supplied through meters during the year, was 315,422,000, of an approximate consumption of 980,267,000 gallons, and of $68,499 received for water rates, $28,581 was for metered water.
Malden, Mass., with a total of 7,137 services, has 6,872 meters, including 1,704 Trident. 1,369 Crown, 1,260 Nash, 1,050 Lambert and 654 Empire; 101 meters were added during the year. In their annual report, speaking of the meter rates adopted, the street and water commission say: “A flat rate for water, as recommended by the financial commission (a majority of one) does not appeal to the judgment of the street and water commission, a judgment that is confirmed by the practice of every water board, so far as known, in the State of Massachusetts. The water rates adopted mean a saving to the water takers of this city of $50,000 yearly, as compared with the rates for 1906, not a small reduction in three years.” One thousand five hundred and four meters, on 2,338 services, is the report of Water Registrar C. A. Byrne, of Marlboro, Mass. Just half of the meters in use, 751, are Hersey, there are also 303 Thomson, 140 Trident and 113 Nash in use, besides a number of other makes, less than 100 of each kind. There are in Springfield, 111., 6,846 services and the city reports 869 meters in use, of which 649 are of the Crown pattern.
During the fiscal year ending June 30, 1909. 1,617 water meters were installed in the plant of the District of Columbia in private residences. The total number of meters in private residences at the close of the year was 12,116. In addition to these there are 2,463 meters in business establishments, making a total number of meters in service of 14,579. This is 24 per cent, of the number of water-service connections, which is 60,117. The District commissioners report notable results obtained during the year in the direction of decreasing water waste. By the use of the pitometer many underground leaks were discovered and repaired, and a careful house-to-house inspection was made to discover leaks in plumbing fixtures. These measures, together with the increased use of water meters, which are being installed as rapidly as the water department funds will admit, caused the daily consumption of water to be reduced from 64,500,000 gallons to 61,200,000 gallons, while during the same period there was a population increase of about 6,000. The waste of water discovered by these means aggregated 9,561,000 gallons per day.
In a report made to the Board of Estimate and Apportionment of the city of Rochester, N. Y., in connection with a propose_____, reduction in the rates charged for water. Superintendent Beekman C. Little, embodied the following comments on the city’s water consumption: “Our total consumption at present averages abbout 17,000,000 gallons a day, increasing at about 400,000 gallons each year. That is, in five years our consumption will approximate an average of 19,000,000 gallons a day. This is a small consumption considering the size of Rochester and it is undoubtedly due to the general meter system which we now have. Buffalo, a city which does not sell its water by meter, has a daily consumption of over 300 gallons per person. If Rochester, with an estimated population of 200,000 (which is conservative) used or wasted as much water per person it would mean a daily consumption of more than 60,000,000 gallons, which is away beyond the capacity of our conduits, or even our source of supply. The meter plays a very important part in our waterworks plant, and it is imperative that its use be continued and extended wherever possible, if we would stay within the limit of safety of our water supply.”
By close observation of the nature and quantity of the discharge from the sewers, the hoard of water commissioners of Gloversville. N. Y., were enabled to decide that a large proportion of the 2,000.000 gallons of water, daily supplied to the city, was being wasted. A house to house inspection of fixtures confirmed this decision and the compulsory installation of meters in cases where such waste was found to exist, was enforced. The board placed itself on record to the effect that “the only just and equitable way to buy or sell water is by measure. The sooner the whole system is metered the better. It is unfair to the 70 per cent, of careful water takers to allow 30 per cent, to waste water because of inferior plumbing. If a building is so plumbed that water pipes freeze in winter, the department should not he asked to make up to the owner the difference between good and bad installation, in allowing water to run to waste in cold weather. Almost every water taker who has good plumbing can save money and expense by using a meter.” Of 3,597 taps, reported on January 1, 1909, 333 were metered. All services leading to properties having hopper closets, hotels, saloons, bottling houses, restaurants, livery stables, laundries, mills, business properties and factories are required to be metered, and the number of metered domestic services is constantly increasing.
Hazelton, Pa., has adopted the following schedule of water rates: Kitchen, $5; bathtub, $3; wash stand, $1; private water closet, $1; stationary tub, $1; pave wash., $3; hydrant, $5; family, $3; store, $5; private stable, $5; saloon, $10; beer pump, $15; public water closet, $5; public urinal, $5; private urinal, $1; bottler, $20; barber shop, C. W., $3; barber shop, 1 S., $2; barber shop, 2 S., $10; public stable, $25; public wash stand, $5; water closet, semi-public, $2.50; boiler, $1; fire hydrants, $12.50. Meter rate, 10 cents per thousand gallons.
Tarrytown, N. Y.—Following are rates for three months: First 4.000 cu. ft., $3 per thousand; any quantity over 4,000 cu. ft. from high service, $1.50 per thousand ft.; the next 6,000 cu. ft. used from the low service, $1.50 per thousand ft.; the next 50,000 cu. ft. used from the low service, $1 per thousand ft.; the next 100,000 cu. ft. used from the low service, 80 cents per thousand ft,; all over 160,000 cu. ft. used from the low service, 70 cents per thousand cubic feet.
Covington, Ky.—Less than 100 cu. ft., 14 cents per 100 cu. ft.: 100 to 134 cu. ft., 12 cents per 100 cu. ft.: 134 to 268 co. ft., 11 1/4 cents per 100 cu. ft.: 268 to 402 cu. ft.. 10 1/2 cents per 100 cu. ft.: 402 to 536 cu. ft., 9 3/4 cents per 100 cu. ft.: 536 to 670 cu. ft., 9 cents per 100 cu. ft.; 670 to 1,340 cu. ft., 8 1/4 cents per 100 cu. ft.: 1,340 cu. ft. and upwards, 7 1/2 cents per 100 cu. ft.
Cleveland, O.—A revision of the water rates at Cleveland, O., is possible that would result in the abolition of the present minimum flat rate, substitute a meter charge for every 1,000 feet used, in place of making the charge on the amount consumed above the quantity allowed under the minimum rate, and establish a charge of 50 cents every 6 months for care and rent of meters.
Waterworks Bids Opened.
The Board of Awards of Baltimore, Md., gave out the contracts for the year’s supplies for the water department of that city, last week. They amounted to about $105,000 and were divided among 30 contractors, the largest single contract being for cast-iron pipe and fittings to the United States Cast Iron Pipe and Foundry Company, for $55,170.
Seven bids have been received and opened by the water commissioner of Chicopee, Mass., for a new motor-driven pump, of 100-gallons a minute mean capacity, for the Fairview waterworks. The bids cover the cost of the machine and its installation.
Bids for the great Hill View reservoir, to be constructed in connection with the Catskill water supply system for the city of New York, just beyond the city line of Yonkers, were recently opened by the New York Board of Water Supply. The reservoir is to be constructed of earth embankment, lined with concrete, and will held about a single day’s supply from the Ashokan reservoir, or 500,000,000 gallons. Included in the contract for the Hill View reservoir are two sections of waterway, the Yonkers and Van Cortlandt siphons. There were seven bids, the lowest being submitted by the Millard Construction Company, of Philadelphia, for $3,269,280, and the highest by the J. F. Cogan Company, of Brewster, N. Y., for $4,341,975.