Olde Town Arvada Water Tower to Get Facelift

The Olde Town Arvada Water Tower in the present day. Source: Maria VanderKolk, City of Arvada, Colorado.
The Olde Town Arvada Water Tower in the present day. Source: Maria VanderKolk, City of Arvada, Colorado.

By Maria VanderKolk, Communications Manager, Arvada.org

At 116 years of age, the Olde Town Arvada Water Tower is looking quite sprightly, presiding over an historic district that has been undergoing a dramatic revitalization.

Still, this grand icon of Arvada, exposed to over a century’s worth of sun, wind, rain, snow, and the occasional lightning strike, needs a facelift every once in a while.  And so, in anticipation of the opening of the G Line commuter rail line later this year which includes a stop in Olde Town Arvada,  the Olde Town Water Tower is getting gussied up.

Beginning this week, locally-based Coblaco Services, Inc. is on site, preparing the Tower for a fresh coat of paint. Coblaco Services, Inc. is an industrial blasting and painting company established in 1978.  Headquartered in Aurora CO, Coblaco has completed projects throughout the United States.

History of the Water Tower

In 1910, six years after Arvada incorporated, the Town Board worked to find a solution to chronic water shortages.  Two wells were drilled south of Grandview Avenue, providing artesian water which was then pumped into the newly constructed tower which stood 150 feet above ground, supported by steel trestles.

The Water Tower circa 1912. Source: Maria VanderKolk, City of Arvada, Colorado.
The Water Tower circa 1912. Source: Maria VanderKolk, City of Arvada, Colorado.

The Arvada Water Tower was the first of its kind in the area.  A celebration was held on October 12, 1910, attended by Colorado Governor John Shaftroth and Denver Mayor Robert Speer.

The Water Tower was decommissioned in 1977 after serving Arvada residents for 67 years. However, the Arvada City Council recognized the historical significance of the structure and chose to preserve it, painting the words “Olde Town Arvada” on the tank.  In 2003, as the Olde Town area was in the midst of a revitalization and the Water Tower Village development was developed in the shadows of the Tower, the Tower received a major facelift with new paint and lettering that matched the City’s brand.

Current Day

Ultraviolet rays have significantly faded the paint on the Water Tower; in addition, some of the structural elements including the legs and platform require attention.  The City of Arvada issued a Request for Proposals and chose Coblaco Services, Inc. to do the following work:

  • Surface preparation and painting of the complete exterior surfaces of the Water Tower.
  • Spot cleaning of rust and rivets.
  • Constructing concrete retaining walls on three of the Tower’s six base shoes to contain landscape materials.
  • Cleaning and painting of all associated metal work such as railing and fence materials.
  • Concrete stain and polishing of the center platform.

The total cost of the project is $237,187.

Olde Town Water Tower Fast Facts

  • Built in 1910.
  • Decommissioned in 1977.
  • Held 150,000 gallons of water.
  • 152 feet tall overall.
  • Tank is 42 feet high and 25 feet in diameter.
  • Supported by six columns arranged in a hexagonal pattern.

For more information, visit arvada.org.

About Kay Whatley 1808 Articles

Kay Whatley serves as Editor and Reporter with The Grey Area News. Kay is a published author with over 20 years of experience in the publishing industry. Kay Whatley is wife to Frank Whatley, founder of The Grey Area™ newspaper and The Grey Area News online news website.