Redesigning the Fire Hydrant

The gush of an uncapped fire hydrant in the summer is a welcome relief for urban dwellers, but the water loss is staggering. Landscape architect Adrienne Cortez decided to find a solution to keeping people cool and similarly activating public space.

"A gushing hydrant drenching happy kids is an iconic image of urban summertime. My first 4th of July living in New York was boiling hot and I was thrilled to see the open hydrants in person. It wasn't until several years later that this article from the Times caused me to rethink the excitement of the open hydrant.

The article provided a shocking statistic: at full power an open hydrant pumps out 1,000 gallons of water a minute. Uncapping, or opening, the local hydrant for relief from the heat had never struck me as anything more than a fun, and totally accepted, urban practice that had been going on for decades."

Full Story: NYC Uncapped

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