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Public Works

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Ann Arbor is not managed according to socialistic ideas, and as a consequence her public works are not great in number. She owns neither water works nor electric lights, both of these enterprises being private property. Those public works which Bhe does reserve to herself are maintained in a manner which reflects great credit upon the city. THE PAID FIRK DEPARTMENT is the most important of these. It was organized io May, 1889, and at that time included three men, a team of horses and a hose wagon. It íb a muoh more extensivo affair now. Eight regular men and five minute-men, who report at night, are now on duty. Frederick Sipley, who for twenty-five years has been connected with the department, is the efficiënt chief. The total valué oí the property is about 25,000. Of this amount 818,000 ie invested in the building, 83,800 in hose wagons and hook and ladder trucks, $1,700 in hose, and $1,000 in horses, of which there are five. There are two hose wngons, one Seagrave hook and ladder truck, one steamer and two hand engines, all in good repair. The rapidity with which the brave boys turn out to a fire excites the admiration and curiosity of all who see them. Without doubt they have been the means of preventing many disastrous conflagrations. During the year ending April 1, 1891,there were forty-one alarma, and the total loss f rom fire in this city of 10,000 people was only $1,844.74, almost entirely covered by insurance. The losses during the last year of the volunteer department amounted to over 837.000. The department is economically managed. The total expenses for the year ending April 1, 1891, were only $5,283.61, of which $3,190.57 was paid in salaries. A board of three fire commissioners, holding office for three years each, has complete charge of the finances, and of the hiring and discharging of men. In all probability the efficiency of this department will soon be roade still greater by the establishment of a firealarm or telephone system. TROPOSED IMPROVEMENTS. The proposed sewerage system is absorbing a great deal of attention this year, and the project is likely to materialize within a comparatively short time. Many people are in favor of levying at once a special tax of 820,000, with which to build the trunk Bewer. Others prefer to bond the city. No matter which policy prevails, Ann Arbor is morally certain to have sewerage before the end of 1893. Professor C. E. Greene, one of the f oremost civil engineers in the United States, has carefully drawn up a plan for sewering Ann Arbor, which is practicable and at the 6ametimeeconomical. The trunk sewer is to follow the course of Allen's Creek, a little stream which rises in the southern part of the city, and runs in a northerly and easterly direction to the river. The entire city slopes towards this creek, thus ensuring the best drainage possible. Another project, that of paving the streets, is considerably agitated, although this is an improvement not so necessary in Ann Arbor as in some cities where the soil is not so hard or porous.


Old News
Ann Arbor Register