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Water tank designation caps off a year of wet work in Minturn

Town oversees construction of one tank, historic preservation of another

Minturn's water tank was built in 1941 as a venture between the town and the Denver & Rio Grande Western Railroad.
Tricia Swenson/Vail Daily

The Minturn Town Council on Wednesday made official the creation of its register of historic places by adding something to it.

The silver water tank overlooking the downtown area, which bears the town’s name in bold font, became the first property added to the Town of Minturn Register of Historic Places after an application for designation received council approval on second reading. The first reading was approved Dec. 7.

The tank dates back to 1941 when its water served both town residents and steam engines on the nearby railroad tracks, according to the application.



In approving the application, the council upheld a recommendation from the town’s newly formed Historic Preservation Commission, which holds evening meetings on the third Thursday of each month. Both the commission and the historic register were created earlier this year in an effort to better preserve the town’s heritage.

Minturn Town Manager Michelle Metteer said the tank’s addition to the new register is “the first of what we hope will be many” properties approved for the register.

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“This is a unique and truly Minturn landmark that we felt was kind of an easy win hopefully for everybody to celebrate,” Metteer said on Wednesday.

The unanimous approval by the seven-member council received a round of applause from those in attendance at Wednesday’s meeting.

“(The tank) will now be listed as No. 1 in Minturn’s historic register,” Metteer said.



Beyond the berm of this town-owned location in Minturn lies the town’s water plant, hidden from view. A new water tank is set to be completed soon on nearby land after the town awarded a $2.2M contract to DN Tanks in February.
Chris Dillmann/Vail Daily

Tale of two tanks

The designation of the 1940s-era water tank, which is no longer in use, follows the development of a new water tank for the town in 2022.

A $2,255,084 water tank construction project in the Maloit Park area is now nearly complete, town officials said Wednesday. It’s expected to help with water pressure and new development in town.

Eagle County School District hopes to build as many as 150 employee housing units on land it owns near the new tank, and several other developments are awaiting the expiration of a moratorium on the allocation of water taps for new-build construction projects in town.

The new 600,000-gallon water tank is currently receiving its final checkups before being hooked into the town’s system, Metteer said Wednesday.

The new tank received $1 million in federal funding via 2022 Senate appropriations and is regarded as the first step in a comprehensive water system improvement effort in Minturn. That effort will culminate with the construction of a new water treatment plant; the town has hired HDR, Inc. for professional engineering services in the design and engineering of the new plant.

The town of Minturn also installed new water meters for most residents in 2022, allowing users to receive hourly consumption updates. The new system is expected to come online in the coming weeks.


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