UPDATE (5/15/2015): The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission has issued a clarification on the rules surrounding the use of recycled water on demolition sites. Lennar is actually required to use potable water, according to the new statement.
As the drought grinds on and people get used to giving up on their lawns and practice their best stinkeye on neighbors who hose down their driveways, it has come to light that developer Lennar Urban has been using firehoses of drinking water to control dust at the Candlestick Park demolition site. The Contra Costa Times reports that even though there is a sewage treatment plant offering truckloads of free recycled water not two miles away, Lennar persists in using drinking water in its fire hoses, which when used under high pressure can spray more than 100 gallons per minute, by the way.
Lennar, which at one point entertained the idea of imploding Candlestick for expediency and also possibly Super Bowl halftime kicks, settled on a more conventional (and painstaking) demolition after Bayview-Hunters Point neighbors worried about toxic dust plumes arising from an implosion. Dust control is required in piece-by-piece demolitions for similar reasons, which is why all the water.
Last year the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission began offering construction crews free use of recycled water as part of a conservation initiative.
In a statement to the Contra Costa Times, Lennar development director B.H. Bronson Johnson said that his company had received an email from the utilities commission explaining that recycled water "is not authorized for larger demolition dust-control purposes during construction."
SFPUC spokesman Tyrone Jue countered to the paper that Lennar must have gotten the wrong idea from the email, and that the water is indeed authorized for dust control. Jue added that Lennar is not likely to be fined for using drinking water.
At this point, the amount of drinking water wasted in about two months of demolition remains unclear.
· Candlestick Park Demolition: Stunning Photos of the Stadium's Final Moments [Curbed SF]
· Despite Drought, Demo Crews Douse Candlestick Park Rubble With Drinking Water [Contra Costa Times]
Candlestick to Be Demolished By Wrecking Ball, Not Implosion [Curbed SF]
· Demolition Watch [Curbed SF]