State officials are looking into the possibility of converting the Capitol Complex to Missouri American Water Co.'s services from the well water currently used.
"Based on a very preliminary analysis," Office of Administration Communications Director Ryan Burns said, "the state believes there could be a cost benefit to making the switch from the well water — and associated costs related to required treatment, regular testing and training of staff on testing protocol, and electricity to run multiple pumps."
Burns said a number of buildings are currently connected to the well, including the Capitol, Jefferson, Broadway and Supreme Court buildings; the Senate and House parking garages; the Environmental Control Center; the Lewis & Clark Memorial just east of the Capitol; the Governor's Garden; and the Centaur and Veteran's fountains on the river side as well as the two south-side fountains between the Capitol and High Street.
At the same time, she said, a number of other buildings within the Capitol Complex already are connected to Missouri American Water's services, including the governor's office; Highway and Transportation and Harry S Truman buildings; the Governor's Mansion; Lohman's Landing; Jefferson Hotel; and the Maus House.
The U.S. Post Office building also is served by the company's water, and the state leases the top two floors.
Burns noted the Capitol has a backup connection to Missouri American, even though it typically uses the well system, and the Truman Building has a backup connection to the well while typically using the commercial system.
She said the state is beginning an analysis that "includes all buildings in the Capitol Complex," to decide if a switch would save money and be more efficient than the current plan using well water for some and commercial water for others.
"We expect to complete our assessment and make a decision in early to mid-2018," Burns reported.
Meanwhile, she added: "The state has no concerns with running out of well water" while the assessment process continues.