A new city of Kent water tower under construction on the West Hill fills up most of the space of the former small park.
Crews are working on the base of the $8.4 million reservoir before they start going up nearly 16 stories and complete the tower in 2022.
“The new water reservoir on West Hill will provide the water storage necessary for fire services to keep our community safe, and make sure the city’s growth needs are met over the next couple of decades,” according to a city tweet on June 7 with updated photos of the project.
Construction began in March on the project under construction at 24731 38th Ave. S. by Anacortes-based T Bailey Inc. The project will be paid for from the city’s water utility fund, covered by ratepayer fees.
The council unanimously approved in November 2019 the transfer of a 0.65 acre-city park to the Public Works Department from the Parks Department to build the water storage tank near South 248th Street and Military Road South. Public Works paid the Parks Department $520,000 (set by an appraiser) for the land, with those funds to be used for park expansions, improvements or acquisitions on the West Hill.
The council in September 2019 delayed a vote on the removal of the undeveloped Kronisch Park after several people testified they wanted city officials to find a different spot for the 165-foot tower in order to preserve the park and keep such a tall tower away from their business or home.
The 5-million gallon drinking water reservoir is needed to address a water storage and fire flow deficiency in the West Hill water service area, according to city documents. The reservoir will ensure that residents and businesses have adequate water supply during peak demand and provide necessary fire flow storage for fighting fires.