City of Merced demolishing over 80-year-old water tower, this is why

The City of Merced is demolishing the inactive, 300,000-gallon water tank located on the northwest corner of West 12th Street and Canal Street.

According to the City of Merced, the water tank is 148 feet in height, 40 feet in diameter, and is mounted on six steel supports set in concrete.

From 1934 to 2016, the water tank was connected to the City’s water system.

The tank was disconnected from the operating well on-site in 2016 and no longer plays a role in the City’s water supply and storage.

The water tank was installed in 1934, and the City does not have records that show the structure has been modified since its installation to comply with current building and seismic codes to withstand an earthquake.

In addition, the operating well on the project site, Well 3C, has a history of sand ingress in the well and tank, which results in the development of voids in the soil surrounding the well casing, leading to soil instability.

The weight of the tank contributes to the risk of subsidence on the site and poses a hazard to life and property if the tank should collapse due to soil instability.

The words “Home Of UC Merced” were painted on the water tank sometime between 2004-2005,  “We appreciate the City for allowing us to share the message for several years, we are exploring other venues, including the street banner program” Desiree Lopez, UC Merced public information officer told Merced Golden Wire News.

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