Water restrictions issued in the Twin Cities in light of the drought

MGN

So far it’s been one hot summer. Add in the smokey skies due to Canadian wildfires, and you have one smoldering season. On Wednesday, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency issued an air quality alert for the majority of the state, including the Twin Cities.

The lack of rainfall has only made the situation worse. While Brooklyn Center and Brooklyn Park implement odd-even water restrictions every year from May 1 to Sept. 30, in light of the ongoing drought this year, both Minneapolis and St. Paul have also issued water restrictions this week.

Water restrictions will also take place in surrounding cities. Because Crystal, Golden Valley, and New Hope get their water supply from Minneapolis, those suburbs all fall under the same restrictions. On Monday, July 26, the Bloomington City Council will be asked to adopt a resolution implementing water restrictions outlined here.

See more below for details.

Minneapolis

The City of Minneapolis is now included in a drought warning as defined by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Drought Action Plan. Consequently, effective Wednesday, July 21, the City of Minneapolis has implemented even-odd water sprinkling restrictions until further notice.

The City’s sprinkling restrictions are in place to help reduce demand on the Mississippi River during the ongoing drought.

City of Minneapolis

Sprinkling restrictions

  • Sprinkling lawns is NOT allowed from noon to 6 pm on any day.  
  • On calendar days that are even numbers (examples: July 26 or Aug. 18), the even side of the street CAN sprinkle lawns outside of the noon to 6 p.m. time window. Examples: 1238 Oak St. or 2574 Cedar Ave.
  • On calendar days that are odd numbers (examples July 27 or Aug. 19), the odd side of the street CAN sprinkle lawns. Examples: 1247 Maple St. or 2561 18th Ave.

Exceptions

  • Bushes and flowers may be watered with a hand-held hose as needed.
  • Vegetable gardens and new sod (first two weeks from placement) may be watered on any day but not during the prohibited afternoon hours of noon to 6 pm.
  • Trees may be watered with a dripping hose, bucket or tree watering bag as needed.

Water conservation tips

  • Water during the coolest part of the day to avoid evaporation.
  • Water grass only when it needs it. Most lawns only need an inch of water a week.
  • Install low flow shower heads and faucet aerators.
  • Take shorter showers using low flow showerheads instead of baths.
  • Turn the faucet off while you shave or brush your teeth.
  • Load dishes into the dishwasher without rinsing them.
  • Run the dishwasher only when it’s fully loaded.
  • Fill the sink to wash dishes by hand instead of letting the water run.
  • Use a large pan to clean vegetables rather than letting the water run.
  • Only wash full loads of laundry.

St. Paul

Starting Tuesday, July 20, 2021, St. Paul Regional Water Services (SPRWS) customers are encouraged to engage in watering schedules involving odd/even watering and watering time restrictions.

Odd/Even Watering:

  • SPRWS customers with odd-numbered addresses are asked to limit outdoor watering to odd-numbered days of the month.
  • SPRWS customers with even-numbered addresses are asked to limit outdoor water use to even-numbered days of the month.

Watering Time Restrictions:

  • SPRWS customers are asked to limit outdoor watering to the cooler times of the day – before noon or after 6:00 pm – to minimize evaporation.

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