Editor's note: This corrects the timeline for the Colored Water Treatment facility upgrade and the precentage of ground water sustained.
COSTA MESA — A motorist driving down Placentia Avenue might not look twice at the nondescript concrete warehouse and compact administrative offices of the Mesa Consolidated Water District.
Little does he know that on the western side of Placentia, between 19th and 20th streets, some 10 million gallons of water are constantly circulating and surging behind the steel and concrete walls of Costa Mesa's first reservoir.
Built in 1990 during some of the worst droughts in California history, the reservoir was part of Mesa's Master Plan to end a dependency on water imported from neighboring cities and states.
"The longterm water supply plan is to make Mesa completely independent from unreliable imported water," said Shawn Dewane, president of the board of directors. "We will be the only water agency in the county that is 100% drought-proof. What that means is that even in times of drought we are able to pump an unlimited amount of water from our supply to meet the demands of the citizens."