A worker prepares to weld individual sheets of primed metal that form the Kingstree water tower. The project will take another 60 to 90 days before completion and will meet DHEC recommendations for additional water supply to the city. Photo by Michaele Duke
If you've driven by Kingstree Town Hall lately, its not hard to miss a towering addition. A new water tower, in its last phase of construction is part of the town's 2010 water/wastewater projects. The project was funded through the USDA according to Kingstree Town Manager Dan Wells . The tower is constructed of approximatly 60 tons of metal, 170 feet tall and will hold 300,000 gallons of water.
The reason behind the installation, explained Wells, wasn't because the city is in short supply of fresh water. "It’s there for two reasons, " he said. "We found out we were a little short of Department of Health and Environmental Control requirements for water storage and also in the event of a disaster, such as a hurricane we want to make sure the citizens have adequate water supply during the time we would be without power."
The city has three operational water towers. A tower located at the former town hall in the city's historic district was dismantled sometime in the mid-90s. The builder, Caldwell Tanks, is based in Lousiville, Kentucky. The company has been in operation since 1887 and constructs customized water towers and other specialty storage structures throughout North America.
As the pieces of the structure called sheets are welded together, rows of rust are left behind - leaveing one to wonder what the water that will eventually fill the tank will taste like. Wells said that is nothing to worry about. "They will disinfect the inside paint, and it before it is put into operation." Wells expects the tower will be operational within 60 to 90 days.