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About Us

Meet Our Board Members


Richard Avila

Gary Dinkel

Lee Baggett

Jo Guiney

Dana Oppenlander

Point to the picture to see who they are and click to enlarge.

About Us

History of the District

Deschutes Valley Water District was formed in 1919 from a private water system, Jefferson Water Company.  This private company could not achieve a profitable return, so they chartered the District we have today under the Oregon Revised Statutes, Chapter 264.  The signatures on the original charter are a "who's who" of the pioneers of the Culver-Metolius area.

The original service area included the City of Culver, the City of Metolius, and the surrounding agricultural areas south of Juniper Butte to the north end of Metolius. Up until 1997 when the first artesian well was drilled, Opal Springs had been the sole source of domestic water since the inception of the District. However, Opal Springs was privately owned until the District purchased it in 1958.

The distribution of water throughout the rural area was not feasible in the the 1920's because of the sparse population. Instead, the District installed a wooden mainline to a standpipe in the city of Culver.  There, residents from outlying areas could fill tanks to transport home.  A single 3" pipeline also served the City of Metolius and its outlying areas.

With the formation and completion of the North Unit Irrigation project, the Culver/Metolius/Madras areas were broken into 80 to 160 acre parcels a massive influx of farmers began in the mid 1940's.  This sudden population growth required the District to install any new mainlines to distribute domestic water to the many newly formed farms.  During this same period, the are north of Madras (called the Plains) formed a water district to accomplish the same tasks in that area.

In 1948, The Plains Water District and Deschutes Valley Water District merged to form the approximate boundaries we have today.  The conveyance of water over such a long distance (23.6 miles) presented many problems that required long District board meetings to solve.  The District has been fortunate to have faithful and responsible Board members over the years.  For many years, the District strove and strained within its budget at times, to deliver to each service with undersized and leaky mainlines.

The most important milestone in District history was the purchase of Opal Springs in 1958.  Previously, the purchase of water and the poor condition of the pumps at Opal Springs had kept the District poor and without water at times.  The purchase, modifications, new pump house, and discharge lines began a cycle that has bee repeated over and over.  The process includes installing pumping capacity, discharge lines, storage, and then distribution lines.  By the time a cycle is finished, new and improved facilities are required and the cycle begins anew.

Historically, whenever possible, new construction is done by District crews.  In the last five years, the District has installed an average of 8.7 miles of pipe per year.  In 1995, additional personnel were hired so the District could keep up with recent growth.  In 1995 alone, 12.2 miles of pipe were installed and two tank foundations with piping were constructed.

Other new construction projects have included a shop, a warehouse, a reservoir by the KOA campgrounds, and (at Opal Springs) a pump house.  Projects for 2003-2005 include a 24" transmission main from the main reservoirs to Madras (16.5 mi. long), and a 3 million gallon reservoir at Round Butte. 


Deschutes Valley Water District’s Pump House

In a time when there is so much controversy about water shortages, Deschutes Valley Water District (the District) has plenty to go around.  With the completion of our new pump house and the addition of our three artesian wells we have increased our pumping capacity by approximately 5,510 gpm. In other words we can get more of our great tasting water to our customers faster and will be able to provide that same service even when our customer base grows.   The Pump House Project began in August 2001 and was completed in May 2003.  Tenneson Engineering Corporation provided the plans for the project.  Our own crews completed the site preparation, foundation, and pipe work.  Kirby Nagelhout Construction erected the building and CED supplied the electrical.  The total cost of the new facility was $978,994.00.  Our Hydro Facility and construction savings accounts allowed us to fund this project without going to our customers for bonding costs.  Below is a fact sheet for your convenience:  

New Pump House

 Cost:                      $978,994.00

 Total Capacity:     (8) 500 hp  

Currently Using:     (2) 500 hp

Current total DVWD pumping capacity (including old pump house)= (3) 150’s producing 1500 gpm + (2) 400’s producing 2800 gpm + (4) 500’s producing 7400 gpm = 3250 hp producing 11700 gpm

 Artesian Wells

Well #1                       Drilled 1997   750 ft deep    12” diameter    3750 gpm    Static psi=50

Well #2                       Drilled 1998   513 ft deep    16” diameter    5360 gpm    Static psi=50

Well #3                       Drilled  2000  661 ft deep    16” diameter    4000 gpm    Static psi=50


This Page Last Modified on May 9, 2017