The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation has signed an agreement with the Lewiston Orchards Irrigation District (LOID) to fund a pilot water exchange project.
The construction of a groundwater well will see if LOID is able to come up with an alternate source of water for the Lewiston Orchards district. According to LOID District Manager Barney Metz, finding an alternate water source is important in preventing future water restrictions.
"The reality of it is, is we haven't been on restrictions in five years,” said Metz. “And that's because of our conservation efforts, putting meters in place, and because our patrons have been good stewards of the water. But no one will ever forget the time in the past where we had irrigation restrictions. So were trying to work away from that."
Right now, all irrigation water is pulled from reservoirs. This project will cost more than $5,000,000. It’ll be located near the Lewiston Nez Perce County Regional Airport. Metz said the project won't be in the way of any pretty views for nearby residents.