Citycalls for Semiahmoo residents to conserve water

Published on Thu, Jul 5, 2007 by Tara Nelson

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City calls for Semiahmoo residents to conserve water

By Tara Nelson

The city of Blaine is urging Semiahmoo residents to voluntarily enact conservation measures throughout the summer to maintain adequate water pressure throughout the area of West Blaine.

In a regular meeting of Blaine City Council last week, public works director Steve Banham outlined needed improvements to the water supply system serving Semiahmoo Resort , one of the city’s largest customers.

Banham said the measure is necessary to maintain an adequate water pressure of 330 pounds per square inch (psi) as required by law, to safeguard normal domestic and fire flow services while protecting system components from excessive wear.

“This is not a water supply issue,” he said. “It is a distribution system problem specific to that area.”

Banham said Semiahmoo is comprised of two distinct pressure zones as a result of differences in elevation, both of which are supplied with water by an inadequate pump station.

Banham said improvements outlined in the meeting are scheduled to be implemented by summer of 2008.

“During the current summer season, however, we are asking that resort residents make modest adjustments to their customary water consumption practices from now until Labor Day,” he said. “We are hopeful that voluntary reductions will result in sufficient savings to safeguard basic service levels during the driest part of the summer season so that more restrictive measures are not necessary.”

Bob Williams, a resident of Canvasback Road in Semiahmoo, said he agreed the measure was necessary.

“It’s not necessarily the result I would like to see since I’m mister excessive and I also have the greenest grass, but I think it is a good compromise,” he said. “I would also like to see the council try to come up with the money as soon as possible to get the pipes and pump station that we need. “

Banham said building a new pump station may require the city to compromise with current property owners whose fixtures are gauged for a lower pressure and may break under a new system.

“We plan to meet with homeowners to find a solution,” he said.
Banham added the city is requesting that all residents limit irrigation water usage to even-numbered calendar days for even-numbered addresses, and odd-numbered calendar days of odd-numbered addresses.

“Experts have shown your lawn needs only one inch of water per week to remain healthy, and anything more than that is unnecessary and perhaps even harmful,” he said.

For more information about lawn care, visit the Puget Sound Partnership for Water Conservation’s web site at www.partners4water.org/conservationtips_yard.html.