We have depended upon the Olympia artesian well for our drinking water for more than 10 years. We appreciate what the city has done to preserve it but are distressed that, in the current redesign, the city seems to be losing sight of why the well is prized: It’s the Water! pure and simple.
Without the taint of chlorination or other off-tastes it makes the well a remarkable community resource. We now read of many new possibilities: a performance space, food trucks, picnic tables, and more. Where does the water figure in all of this? If the recent makeover is any indication, the water is likely to be overlooked. With all that went into that upgrade, the water itself got only a replacement pipe and drain. Residents wait in line to fill containers; why were not two outlets installed? Sure, that might lower the flow in each, but it would add convenience.
Importantly, a drinking fountain could have been included. Now, some who drink directly from the flowing pipe put their mouths on the opening. Olympia, please give the water its due.
An additional note: We have never been accosted by panhandlers. We’ve had many pleasant interchanges with street people and enjoy talking with them and the others who come for the water. The well has truly enhanced our membership in the Olympia community.