City Council Approves Major Step in Providing Water Infrastructure to Downtown Fresno

The Fresno City Council took a significant step today in the process to acquire land in for the construction of a three million gallon water storage tank to increase water supply capacity in the downtown area. The Council accepted an environmental report as required under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) process, allowing the City to continue with the planned purchase of a 3.6 acres property currently owned by Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR). The property, located near H and Monterey Streets, is the proposed site for the new water tank.

Under an April 2009 direction by the City Council, the Department of Public Utilities (DPU) entered into a Purchase and Sale Agreement with Union Pacific Railroad (UPRR). Council’s approval today meets a portion of the legal requirements, under CEQA, needed to move the project forward.

“Improving the water flows and upgraded infrastructure is a key component in the City’s downtown growth plan,” said Rene Ramirez, Director of Public Utilities. In addition to ensuring sufficient water supplies to meet residential and commercial needs, the new tank will also enhance fire suppression capabilities in the downtown area.

The cost to acquire the H. Street property from UPRR is $642,564. The purchase will be made using water enterprise funds, which will be reimbursed with future bond proceeds.