The 12th Avenue water storage tank that has been under restoration over the last few months, was put back into service over the weekend and is now fully operational.
The 12th Avenue water storage tank, built in 1989 by Landmark Structures, required restoration due to several issues. These included deteriorating wet coating, surface corrosion, ladder defects, and seam issues. Additionally, the exterior coating showed signs of failure, with chalking and oxidation of the finish coat.
This refurbishment process involved sandblasting and the application of a three-coat system. In addition to the coating upgrades, several interior repairs were made, including the replacement of painter's rails, safety climb device, repairs to roof plate seams, welding of ladder siderails, replacement of gaskets, and the installation of a Grid-Bee GS-12 Submersible Mixer. This mixer was installed to provide improved mixing capabilities, reducing the chances of ice formation in cold weather and preventing water stratification in warmer conditions, ultimately enhancing water quality.
The comprehensive restoration and reconditioning of the water storage tank amounted to an approximate cost of $700,000, paid through City water funding.
The final phase of the restoration involved the application of the exterior coating, a process that involved collaborating with Emporia State University. A mural featuring ESU branding was included in the exterior coating, symbolizing a 10-year commitment from the university totaling $75,000.
“When we talk to current and future students, alumni and partners, we talk about our Emporia community as one of our best features,” said Kelly Heine, Vice President for Marketing + Undergraduate Admissions. “Emporia State University deeply appreciates the Emporia community and the partnership we have with the city. The newly branded water tower is a tremendous visual display of our great university town.”
City Manager Trey Cocking expressed great enthusiasm in collaborating with Emporia State University, stating, "The City and Emporia State are thrilled to greet community visitors through the representation of the mural."
City staff is grateful to the community, businesses, and industrial partners as well as contractors that have been involved and patient throughout this restoration project. The City anticipates reinstating the water storage tank to deliver quality water that exceeds KDHE standards. Additionally, city contractors are completing upgrades to the Peyton Street waterline which will improve water service capabilities to industrial partners as well as the community.