PRIMED UP — Dustin Colby of Hancock Sandblast and Paint located in Pasco applies a light blue epoxy primer onto the ladder attached to the Sunnyside Water Tower on Skyline Drive in preparation for new layers of paint. See story on Page A2.

SUNNYSIDE — According to Public Works Director Shane Fisher, the Sunnyside Water Tower on Skyline Drive has received several updates years in the making.

Fisher explained the water tower was built approximately in the late 1950s, however, it was not built with an anchoring system.

The Public Works Directed added that Sunnyside is in Seismic Zone D and “although we are not expecting earthquakes,” Fisher assures, safety measures have been installed to 110-foot tower.

After a tank assessment was done by HDR Engineering of Pasco “years ago,” according to Fisher, plans were made to update the tower. 32 anchors have since been installed around the perimeter of the tank.

The tower has a million gallons of water inside and Fisher conveyed, “We don’t want a tank like that to tip over or slide off the concrete slab.”

Along with the anchors, Fisher said the city decided to fully renovate it.

“In the phase two portion of the project was draining the tank and removing all the sediment inside by sandblasting the tank, resealed and recoated the inside, then we filled it back with water and put it back into service.”

There was also piping work done for the tank, new ladders, and catwalks, as well as communication antennas added, which helps the boost the signal for radio communications between police officers as the hill can cause problems with connection.

The painting of the tower was slated for last year, but due to poor weather conditions the completion of the tower was postponed until recently.

The Sunnyside Water Tower will commence with the exterior painting later this week.

Elizabeth Sustaita can be contacted at 509-837-4500, ext. 114 or email

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