Another gloomy report

It sometimes feel as though all the projects we have failed to do over the years have come back to haunt us now. One of the infrastructure items San Francisco should have is an updated emergency water system. The worst damage of the devastating 1906 earthquake was caused by fires which firemen could not put out because the water system collapsed. Ten years after the quake, San Francisco put in an extensive system of emergency water pipes and cisterns to protect the city in case of future emergencies. The system has worked well in several fires, but of course we’ve had nothing like the huge 1906 event. When you look at the Chronicle’s map of where the emergency water lines and storage facilities are, it is clear that only about half the city is protected. At the time the system was built, housing clustered downtown in the northeastern section of the city. Our water system needs to be updated, so don’t be surprised if the city faces another bond measure in the next election. And this emergency system is not the only water problem the city and Bay Area faces. For Leagers who want to learn more about the area’s needs, the Bay Area League will sponsor a program on “Water: California’s New Gold” on January 31. Deatils are available at

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