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What’s wrong with this picture?

By David Schick


GPC Clarkston is home to a very unique water fountain. A water fountain with no water, except when it rains.

The fountain in question was deactivated during the years of 2006-2009 when a drought schedule issued by Governor Sonny Perdue prohibited most outdoor water use.

Electrical controls and equipment to the fountain exist in an underground vault. During the time it was inactive, “The electrical feed to the fountain vault failed. Since the fountain wasn’t being run, no one knew about the electrical problem,” said Lewis Godwin, director of campus planning and projects.

The faulty electrical feed also controlled the sump pump, a type of pump used to remove water which accumulates when flooding happens regularly.

Roughly two years ago when the prohibition on outdoor water use was lifted, a futile attempt was made to restart the fountain. By then it was too late because the vault had been “filled with water” which ruined “the pump and all the electrical equipment” inside according to Godwin.

About six months ago, an inquiry by the Student Government Association led to Campus Planning and Projects to do an estimate on the cost of repairing the fountain.

“The fountain can be fixed, but it will be very expensive … The granite on the fountain needs to be reset in mortar and the pool waterproofing material needs to be reapplied. That all adds up to around $100,000,” said Godwin. “There is a very large pump in the vault and the fountain circulates a very impressive amount of water. It’s not a trickle. It looks like a geyser.”

Currently, there has been no order to begin the repairs on the fountain.

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