Day #013: Better access to drinking water

Access to public drinking water is inadequate in Richmond, and everyone from the homeless to runners suffers.

Inspired by Michael Bierut’s 100 Day Project, 100 Days to a Better RVA strives to introduce and investigate unique ideas to improving the city of Richmond. View the entire project here and the intro here.

  • Idea: Increase public access to clean drinking water.
  • Difficulty: 1 — This is a traditional responsibility of cities and longterm costs are relatively low.

Healthcare is an internationally recognized human right according to the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Recently in the United States, we have taken steps to increase access to affordable healthcare.

In Richmond, increasing access to affordable healthcare is a valuable longterm goal, but we should start by increasing access to clean, free drinking water.

Water is fundamental to life and health. If you don’t have a residence and can’t afford to eat in restaurants, then finding free drinking water is a difficult task in Richmond. For runners, residents on a hot summer day, and even dogs, the problem is less a matter of a life and death but still highly inconvenient. The number and quality of water fountains needs to increase.

In 2012, tried mapping these “elusive unicorns” but their list stops at a depressing ten water fountains for a 62.5-square-mile city. The article also infers a valuable idea: mapping the water fountains in Richmond–a feature that could be valuable on the city website.

The debate over whether healthcare is a right in the United States continues to wage on. For now, we can rally behind easier access to drinking water.

Love this idea? Think it’s terrible? Have one that’s ten times better? Head over to the 100 Days to a Better RVA Facebook page and join in the conversation.

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Aaron Williams

Aaron Williams loves music, basketball (follow @rvaramnews!), family, learning, and barbecue sauce.

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