Can Drinking Fountains Make a Comeback?

In an effort to not use plastic water bottles, drinking fountains are coming back into style. Drinking fountains are saving the environment while keeping people hydrated (Go Haws!).

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In Lafayette, Louisiana, a few men who are frequent runners, are in works of bringing drinking fountains back to Lafayette and they are seeking help. Last fall, Mark C. LeBlanc and Butch Roussel were running together and lamenting that the lack of drinking water fountains limited to their route. Roussel had just launched civicside.com, a crowdfunding/kick-starter website to fund community projects,”That seemed like a logical way to bring filtered water fountains to various neighborhoods where people are active”, LeBlanc said.

The Hydrate Lafayette project took months to coordinate. Getting permission and help from from various Lafayette businesses and organizations like: consolidated government departments, works with a plumber, homeowners, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette’s Department of Industrial Design, and architecture took time.Screen-Shot-2015-04-11-at-5.01.33-PM

LeBlanc stated,”A couple of people in Lafayette have water fountains on their mailboxes. They let anyone drink out of them. That gave us the idea to see if we could get more homeowners to put fountains in.”

“Using 80 percent recycled materials, UL students designed and built several structures to support a water source and four winners were selected”, LeBlanc said. Four others will be pedestal-type fountains similar to brick mailboxes, he said.

Now they’re trying to fund the $14,500 project through civicside.com under Hydrate Lafayette. As of noon 6/5/15, they were approaching 30 percent of their goal with only 24 days left.

The drinking stations will serve runners, bicyclists, walkers, children playing in neighborhoods, pets, the homeless and athletes. Two station locations that have been revealed thus far at St. Joseph Diner and the UL intramural field.

“The initial idea was for runners and walkers, people who are active,” Roussel said. “But when you involve something like St. Joseph Diner, that’s an area of town where people could use the fountain for a necessity, not because I don’t want to bring my water bottle around.”

It’s about more than that for LeBlanc, too.

“I would like to see it succeed to prove to the public if you want something done you don’t have to wait for politicians and bureaucrats to do it,” he said.

Want to help fund public water fountains in Lafayette?

Visit civicside.com and Hydrate Lafayette.

Source: Claire Taylor