Norfolkans can lower their water bills and make their sprinkler systems more effective if they follow a new city code.
The city council has enacted a code encouraging even- and odd-numbered properties to water their lawns on opposite days of the week.
The code was created to take stress off the city’s water system, said Dennis Watts, water and sewer director.
Mondays and Wednesdays tend to be big days for lawn irrigation, putting a lot of stress on the system, lowering water pressure and making sprinkler systems less effective, Watts said.
The code states that properties with even addresses should irrigate their lawns Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays and properties with odd addresses should irrigate their lawns Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, Watts said.
“That would take that stress off the plant,” he said.
The code is not a restriction, but an encouragement, Watts said.
“We’re not restricting water, by any means,” he said. “We’re hoping we’re not asking too much.”
Besides helping out the city, lawn irrigators would save money and get a more effective irrigation system, Watts said.
“To me, it’s a win-win situation,” he said. “It’s not going to cost them any more, it’s just going to give them a more cost-effective system.”
If 70%, or even 60%, of property owners comply, it will probably be enough, Watts said.
In the future, Watts said he plans to bring a new code before the city council that would make this system mandatory if it becomes necessary to restrict water usage, something the city hasn’t had to do since 1978.