PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — “Eyesore” — that’s what some travelers say when they drive through corridor of Airline and Victory boulevards.
A WAVY viewer contacted 10 On Your Side and said she’s tired of looking at it, and asked WAVY to find out what the city is doing to make it more pleasing to the eye.
Dozens of people drive by Airline and Victory boulevards every day.
“I said the City of Portsmouth can do better than that,” resident Frances Sanderlin said. “Do better Portsmouth. I’m a taxpayer, and first of all, this thing has got to go.”
Sanderlin can’t stand the sight of the old-looking water tower, called the “Victory Boulevard” tower. She is so bothered by it, she complained to the Portsmouth Water Department.
“I called them and they told me to not worry about it because my water comes from Suffolk… and I said that’s not the point; it is an eyesore,” she said.
Sanderlin is not alone. Michael Sargeant is from Hertford, North Carolina. 10 On Your Side asked him if he thinks the water tower is a welcoming sign to people from Hertford, NC.
“To be honest with you, I don’t think it is. Not really,” he said.
Resident Debbi Terrell had another question: “Doesn’t it say Portsmouth on it?” Yes it does which raises the question again if the tower is a welcoming symbol of Portsmouth.
Those who Google “old rusty water towers Portsmouth” will see the water tower in question pop up in the search. It was a picture from 2014, and in five years, it has become more rusty.
10 On Your Side met Guy Thompson at the local Wawa convenience store, and he said it’s time to get out the paint.
“No, no. It doesn’t look right. It should be painted by now,” he said.
Sanderlin said she couldn’t believe the city would let the rusted tank sit there for so long.
Portsmouth Spokesperson Dana Woodson emailed 10 On Your Side and said rehabilitation of the water tank is involved in a city plan.
She said: “A Capital Improvement Program was developed to rehabilitate water tanks. The rehabilitation of the Broad Street tank was completed in 2017. Rehabilitation of the Frederick Boulevard storage tank and booster pump station is currently under design and construction is anticipated in Spring of 2020. Future rehabilitation of the Victory tank is programmed in the Department’s Capital Improvement Program and is estimated to cost $1.1 million. Future rehabilitation of the Churchland tank is also programmed in the Department’s Capital Improvement Program.”
The Victory Blvd Tank project will cost $1.1 million dollars, but it is not entirely clear what year it will be started and completed.