Riverside Water Tower

Location:Riverside, Illinois
Client: The Village of Riverside
Project description: Built in 1870, the original water tower was designed by the innovative architect, William Le Baron Jenney, and is one the many elaborate Victorian Gothic structures built in early Riverside, Illinois. An attached pump house and two freestanding round well houses were added by the turn of the century. Disaster struck on New Year's Eve 1913 when a raging fire burned the wooden water tank and the Pump House below. To replace and improve the old tank and waterworks, a new metal tank and 20-foot masonry extension was hastily added in early 1914.

The bottom half of the tower, which survived the 1913 fire, has been restored to its original 1870 appearance. Common red brick and Milwaukee cream brick pilasters and polychrome pointed arches are punctuated with blue-gray limestone details. The original 1870 leaded glass windows were restored as well. The 1914 brick tower extension was built to be painted, so a new breathable masonry coating was applied with a color scheme that corresponds to the 1870 base. The metal tower tank and balcony were painted in four shades of gray and blue-gray which highlight the decorative features and correspond to the new slate roofs installed on the lower pump house and well houses.

Services: Historic Restoration

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