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Water water every where...
Other than fog drip and winter rains, Alcatraz Island is without a source of fresh water.
Historically, both the military and the federal prison had built cisterns to capture rainwater but these have fallen into disrepair over the decades. Today, the island is dependent on water being barged in on a regular basis.
Adapting the historic use of the grey water cisterns from the federal prison shower rooms, the system will capture 15 000 gallons of rainwater, matching the annual needs of the gardens.
A system was designed that is based on gravity. Water from the cell house roof drains to a downspout, that is then directed to the gray water cisterns. The water is filtered through a large filter to stop feathers and larger debris. A first flush diverter prevents the water with smaller particles from being collected. Next, the water is sent through a sand filter where beneficial bacteria neutralize any harmful bacteria.
Did You Know?
The first prison on Alcatraz Island was built by the U.S. Army and was located near the dock. It was demolished after a new military prison was opened at the top of the island in 1914.