News blog for Seattle's Maple Leaf neighborhood

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City questions earthquake safety for buried water reservoirs, including Maple Leaf’s

Posted by Mike on November 16th, 2012

Inside the reservoir almost a year ago. Photo courtesy Dane Doerflinger Photography

The city is concerned that faulty calculations were used when considering earthquake readiness for its four underground drinking water reservoirs, including the one just being finished in Maple Leaf.

Our news partner The Seattle Times has the story here.

City officials say there’s no threat to water quality or public safety and the reservoirs are working as designed. But Seattle Public Utilities (SPU) has spent almost $1 million in the past 18 months to analyze the problem and could spend even more if the four giant underground vaults that hold the city’s drinking water need seismic retrofitting.

Work on the reservoir here has completed; the current construction is to build the playground and park that will sit atop the buried water supply.

The concern is that the initial seismic calculations used were for construction of above-ground reservoirs, not underground ones, according to Times.

Maple Leaf Life led a public tour inside the reservoir, before it was flooded, almost exactly a year ago. The park is scheduled to open next spring.




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