Columbia Parks and Recreation had to spend $20,000 on a new pump to get the fountain at Finlay Park flowing again
The Finlay Park fountain featured in many of the iconic images of Columbia is no longer flowing and many have noticed.
Dre Mack brought his girlfriend Katie to Finlay Park for a scenic date overlooking the infamous fountain while she's visiting from Kentucky.
"You just want a good atmosphere of the water, you know? Being that you don't have it, it kind of takes away from it," said Mack. "You can still make do out here, though!"
The fountain has been quiet since last Friday, after officials learned there was a problem internally."The bearings on the shaft for the pump that runs the fountain had worn out and it caused a leak into the well or the vault that the pump sits in," said Parks and Recreation Director Jeff Caton. "The vault had flooded and it shorted out the electrical system and the pump as well."
After draining the fountain, Caton's team determined the problem couldn't be fixed, and instead has to order a new 75-horsepower pump. The new piece carries a price-tag of nearly $20,000 that will come from reserve funds, but Caton says it's worth it.
"People outside of the community recognize the fountain as that iconic representation of Columbia, and I think it's important for us to make sure that we're maintaining that image for the community," said Caton.
Parks and Rec. is currently gathering bids on the pump and hopes to make the purchase by the end of the week. After the company is picked, Caton says it's only a matter of getting the piece shipped before it's installed and the fountain is working better than before.