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Celebrating 130 Years of Service: Join Metro Water Services for exhibits, talks, and exclusive access to a historic facility

8/1/2019

This month marks the 130th anniversary of the 1889 completion of the George Reyer Pumping Station and Eighth Avenue Reservoir. The pumping station and reservoir, two of the largest components of Nashville’s water treatment and distribution system, are an important part of Nashville’s history and are still in use today.

The pumping station, built of limestone rock and handmade brick, originally pumped water from the Cumberland River to the reservoir for settling prior to distribution to the community. Named the George Reyer Pumping Station in 1932, after long time superintendent, it remains in operation today as part of the Omohundro Water Treatment Plant, which treats up to 90 million gallons of water a day.

The City Reservoir, now known as the Eighth Avenue Reservoir, remains the largest of Metro Water Services 37 reservoirs, holding up to 51 million gallons of water. It is divided into two compartments, each with a capacity of 25.5 million gallons. Originally, raw water was pumped from the Cumberland River to the reservoir where mud from the river was allowed to settle out before the water was distributed. Although no longer used as a settling basin, the reservoir is still in use today to store clean water, treated at one of Nashville’s two treatment plants, for distribution to Metro Water Services’ 205,000 customers.

We hope you will join us for one of the many events planned this month to celebrate 130 years of service:

  • Opening today, August 1, at the main Nashville Library Archives, 615 Church St., a historical exhibit with photos, artifacts and a documentary produced by TN Crossroads.
  • A smaller exhibit will also be on display through the month of August at the Fort Negley Visitors Center, 1100 Fort Negley Blvd.
  • August 2, 9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m., First Friday presentation by Metro Water Services at Bellevue YMCA/FiftyForward Turner Center.
  • August 13 and 15, an opportunity to visit the historic 8th Ave Reservoir – Registration through Eventbrite is required. Registration will open 8:00 a.m. on Monday, August 5 - 130yearstour.eventbrite.com.
  • August 15 at 6:00 p.m., a special presentation by Metro Water Services at the Fort Negley Visitor Center.

Both the Eighth Avenue Reservoir and the George Reyer Pumping Station are on the National Register of Historic Places. The reservoir was listed in March of 1978 and the pumping station was listed in May of 1987.

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