For more than 30 years, the City of Duncan has been working to get the water tower in the northwest quadrant of the city up and running. And starting next week, the city will begin filling the tower with water.

Duncan Mayor Gene Brown discussed the next step in the water tower project Thursday during the community breakfast of the Duncan Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Brown said the tower has been a needed addition to provide more access to water for the northwest area of Duncan.

Brown said that once the water tower is filled, the water quality in the area will be improved and water pressure will increase.

“I think you’ll be very, very proud of the water tower,” Brown said.

He said the project should be completed by the end of November. The water tower is located just off Plato Road to the west of the Stagestand neighborhood.

While the water tower is important for the city, Brown said that’s not the only water-related news in Duncan. The City of Duncan will purchase the remaining water rights for Waurika Lake.

Brown said the State of Texas has been wanting to purchase the water rights for Waurika, which had been a concern for many of the communities in the Southwestern region of Oklahoma. He said many communities, including those in Stephens, Jefferson and Comanche counties, use the water from the lake to provide water to their residents for multiple uses, including drinking, cooking and bathing.

“We decided to go ahead and purchase the rest of the water in Waurika Lake,” Brown said.

The purchase cost between $8 and 9 million. But Duncan area banks are pitching in to help the city secure funds for the purchase.

Brown said he thought purchasing the water rights was the best move because water is an important item for any community. And with the new water tower, the additional water could prove to be more than just beneficial; it could be necessary.

“Water is very, very important,” Brown said.

— Derrick Miller is a reporter for The Duncan Banner. He can be reached at 580-255-5354, Ext. 144, or via e-mail at derrick.miller@duncanbanner.com.

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