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By David Knopf/Richmond News
A new concrete tower rises high above Highway 10 in Elkhorn, causing some to speculate it might be an oversized facility for storing grain.
Not a bad guess in farm country, but the tall, cylindrical tower replaces a smaller, low-slung facility Public Water Supply District #2 uses to supply rural water throughout Ray County.
John Ritchie, who manages PWSD operations, said the tall stature of the new tower allow it to take advantage of elevation and gravity to send water on its way to all four corners of the country – and then some.
“We serve all four directions, county line to county line,” said Ritchie, whose district supplies water to customers in the country as well as residents of Orrick, Hardin, Wood Heights, rural Polo and even the city of Polo through a special contract.
The district was created in 1969.
Weather permitting, the new tower could go on line sometime in January, Ritchie said. It will replace a lower storage structure that created far less elevation-driven water pressure to move water to each end of a very hilly county.