The Richland Center Water Utility strives to provide a reliable and safe source of potable water to its customers. It all started in 1880, when fire protection became a big concern for city fathers, businessmen and the citizenry. Having running water in the home appealed to many as well and our Water Utility was born. Not many records exist from those early days but today our water facilities consist of three operating wells, two reservoirs, each with a half million gallon capacity, and 37 miles of pipe in the ground.
Five wells from the earlier days have been retired. Currently the three operational wells are: Well #6, which is in the North Industrial Park and pumps up to 1,100 gallons per minute (GPM), Well #7, which is near the Wal-Mart area and pumps 1,000 GPM, and the newest, Well #8 on Hwy 14 near the high school and pumps 1,200 GPM.
In 2009 approximately a half a billion gallons of water was pumped to the reservoirs. The least water per day was 553,000 gallons while the highest use was 2,533,000 gallons. The distribution system has some thirty seven miles of watermains and range in size from 2” to 14” in diameter. 785 valves provide isolation control of the system.
There are 356 hydrants in the system that are used for flushing and fire protection. The utility has installed and maintains over 2,400 meters insuring accurate and equitable sale of the water. By making regular improvements to the system, our community has benefited by receiving a fire insurance rating of ISO Class 3 which means lower rates for the Residents, Business, and Industry.
The maintenance shop was relocated to the North Industrial Park in 2002 and houses the department’s vehicles, excavation equipment and repair parts.