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The slow, but steady history of Layton’s water system

Article Published 06/03/2014

Early Layton residents simply used streams for their water supply.

The first well dug in Layton was in the late 19th Century, a 40-foot-deep well, by Richard Ware.

In 1906, J.I. Adams cut into a Layton hillside and tapped a flow of water. He took it about 400 yards to his house and had enough pressure for his own personal fire protection.

In June of 1910, the Holmes Creek Irrigation Company tapped the Birch and Willow Springs at 400 North and Highway 89.

The Layton Water System Incorporated on January 23, 1911. In May of 1911, the System constructed a 6,000-gallon cement water reservoir at 1800 East Gentile Street. They used 18,000 feet of pipe and had six strategically place fire hydrants throughout the city.

In August of 1911, the first culinary water flowed in Layton. Water rates were 50 cents a month. So, some 61 years after the first person settled in Layton, consistent flows of drinking water were established.

However, early residents of Layton were only allowed to water their lawns for 30 minutes a day, or less.

The first water filters were used in the system in 1923.

To further protect the water supply from contamination, a fence to keep livestock, or wild animals, away from the watershed, was erected in 1927.

In August of 1929, the first chlorinated water flowed in Layton City, a cost of $1,500 for the equipment.

In 1931, the privately owned Layton Water System was sold to Layton City and became a government enterprise.

A large area drought in 1934 meant some of the first water meters in Layton City were installed.

By 1985, when Layton City had become Davis County’s largest city, it boasted 13 water reservoirs, three wells, 150 miles of pipes and about 8,000 total connections.

Today, Layton City has 15 reservoirs that store 22.3 million gallons of water; 5 deep underground wells; 8 Weber Basin Water Connections; 275.6 miles of pipe; over 19,000 connections; and boasts a daily capacity of 33.3 million gallons of water.

Sources: “Layton, Utah” history book, by the Kaysville-Layton Historical Society. and Layton City Public Works Department.