Skip to Content

Related News

  • Related News

  • EWEB bids a fond farewell to College Hill Reservoir and prepares for modern drinking water storage tanks

    Several hundred Eugene residents came together on May 30 for a Farewell Celebration at EWEB’s College Hill Reservoir before demolition and construction to build modern drinking water storage tanks begins later this year.

    Find Out More
  • Drinking Water Week 2024

    This week, we celebrate the value of clean, safe water, the importance of water infrastructure, and the critical role of water professionals.

    Find Out More
  • Fixing the Unseen: Water Pipeline Replacement in Unincorporated Eugene

    Learn more about EWEB's methods for monitoring and replacing aged water pipelines.

    Find Out More
  • New tanks come online as EWEB modernizes water system

    New drinking water storage tanks are one of several investments to ensure that EWEB can meet critical community needs in the event of an earthquake.

    Find Out More
  • State of the McKenzie Watershed

    EWEB’s Drinking Water Source Protection (DWSP) team says the McKenzie River continues to be an excellent source for drinking water.

    Find Out More
  • Show More
No Access to College Hill Reservoir Starting June 28

June 28, 2018

Picture of fireworks with a message about closing College Hill Reservoir to protect drinking water

To help protect drinking water, we will continue the ban on fireworks at College Hill Reservoir, and will restrict all access to the reservoir June 28 - July 5.

The fireworks and access prohibition includes the entire surface of the reservoir, located at Lawrence Street and West 25th Avenue. However, legal fireworks can be used on the blacktop surface of the old reservoir to the north of the College Hill structure.  

Fireworks lit off from the top of the reservoir in past years caused damage to the rubberized coating on the surface of the reservoir, installed in 2008 to keep contaminants from seeping into the drinking water below. To ensure people do not set off fireworks on the reservoir this year, we will lock the reservoir gates on Thursday, June 28. The gates will remain locked until 8 a.m. on Thursday, July 5. We're requesting that people stay off the top of the reservoir for the duration of the closure.  

"I am confident our community will be especially vigilant in helping us keep our water safe," said Jason Carman, EWEB's pumping and controls supervisor. "Closing the top of the reservoir to avoid fireworks damage may be inconvenient for some, but is in the best interests of all."

People and pets can pose risks to drinking water

Since the reservoir started operating in 1939, Eugene residents have used it and the surrounding open space as an unofficial park for picnics, star-gazing and bicycle riding. EWEB considered fencing off the reservoir over the past decade because of security and contamination concerns. To maintain public access, we invested more than $1 million on improvements that include joint hardening, slab sealing, head house fencing, installation of electronic surveillance and landscape security improvements. In 2012, we determined that despite the improvements, the roof of the reservoir was still prone to leakage.

Concerned over possible contamination of the water supply from dog feces left atop the facility, we approached nearby residents to find a solution. Working with neighbors over the past several years, we installed access gates and larger signs asking people to keep dogs off the reservoir to protect against potential contamination. The partnership with neighbors has led to a largely successful effort to keep dogs and dog waste off the reservoir.

EWEB staff and neighbors will continue monitoring the reservoir to make sure people are respecting the temporary closure, as well as the prohibition of dogs and the fireworks ban.