Sharring experiences in urban infrastructure delivery.

The Trench Fountains

By: Tom Davis Category: Sidewalk Fountains

The trench fountains–as I call them–are another of the series of fountains on Preston Street in downtown Houston."Trench" Fountain The purpose is to carry on the water theme of the Cotswold project on the signature street. The idea was that it represents a trench in the street with water bubbling up. The fountain works well and the sound of falling water is a pleasant background to the typical street sounds.

The structure is a poured-in-place concrete cradle holding a marble border and marble slopes down to the narrow base in the center with the jets. This photo shows only one of the fountains with the second in the background.  They and the landscaping are located against the right of way line to provide maximum width for the sidewalk.

TrenchFntnCloseup.jpgBoth are served by a water treatment and pumping station in a precast concrete vault below the sidewalk. Access to the vault is byway of a stainless steel hatch and a wall mounted ladder. The water drains from the fountains to a wet well in one end of the vault where it is filtered, treated and pumped back to the fountain. The water level in the wet well is maintained by a automatic float valve connected to a typical water meter.

The fountains were built as part of the Cotswold Program by the Houston Downtown Management District and funded by the City of Houston based on the additional parking meter revenue occurring due to the new businesses and increased traffic.

The fountains are located at Preston and Caroline (map). Maintenance of the fountains is provided by the City of Houston’s Convention and Entertainment Department.



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