Blasting begins to bulk up Atlanta's drinking water supply - CBS46 News

Blasting begins to bulk up Atlanta's drinking water supply

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The city of Atlanta is working to transform this reservoir into a 30-day drinking water supply for the city. (SOURCE: WGCL) The city of Atlanta is working to transform this reservoir into a 30-day drinking water supply for the city. (SOURCE: WGCL)
ATLANTA (CBS46) -

Crews began blasting Wednesday morning to build a tunnel from what will be a massive reservoir in Northwest Atlanta, to the city's water supply in midtown.  The first round of dynamite was detonated just before noon Wednesday at the rock quarry, with crew and other on-lookers standing in the designated safe zone roughly 200 yards away.

"Actually, this was a fairly small blast," said PC Construction manager Wayne DeLong, adding that much bigger blasts would come in the near future.  "The project is very important to the city."

When finished, the reportedly $280M project will increase the city's water supply from it's current three-day supply to a 30-day supply.

“Mayor Kasim Reed recognized the need for reliable delivery of drinking water and redundant water storage in the event of a crisis," Watershed Management Commissioner Jo Ann Macrina. "Through Mayor Reed’s vision, this program will address Atlanta’s goal of achieving a sustainable water infrastructure for future generations and flexibility in system operations."

Blasting will continue for about four months and, once it's complete, the resulting five-mile tunnel will connect the quarry site to the city's water supply.

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