Louisville Water kicked off 2023 with a “new website & fresh new look,” according to the headline on a January 10 website article. “Responding to customer requests for an improved digital experience, today Louisville Water unveiled a new LouisvilleWater.com,” the article said. “The revamped website features an overall better user experience and streamlined ways for customers to pay their bills, see where crews are working, find answers to frequently asked questions, and much more.”
After social media posts drove concerns over water quality following the East Palestine, OH train derailment, Louisville Water quickly reassured the community our water is safe to drink. We used a wide range of channels to spread the message, including local news organizations, newsletters, social media, and our website, which included detailed sampling data from our scientists to make sure customers had the facts.
Louisville Water’s iconic Tower was featured on a bottle of Cavehill, Rabbit Hole Distillery’s special single-barrel bourbon release. “Water is such an important part of our community, obviously with the bourbon industry,” said Rabbit Hole owner Kaveh Zamanian. “I just thought that it’s a natural for us to showcase the Water Tower.”
Also in March, Louisville Water team members spread the Fix a Leak Week message throughout our community. For instance, Education & Outreach staff shared leak-fixing information at the Preston Highway Home Depot, Field Elementary School, Jeffersontown Area Ministries, and the Third Street lobby. They even mailed information to about 1,000 customers whose pipes had burst during the deep freeze last winter.
The company released its Annual Water Quality Report, which included high marks for the quality, taste, and value of Louisville Pure Tap®. The report highlighted Louisville Water’s test results for Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-regulated substances at treatment plants, within the distribution system, and at select customers’ taps. The report also outlined our treatment process and the sources of our water.
Employees throughout Louisville Water helped the community get ready for the Kentucky Derby as well as the mini & Marathon and other Kentucky Derby Festival events. For example, Louisville Water employees set up water troughs at the Pegasus Parade for the horses to enjoy Pure Tap at the beginning and end of the route.
Also, Louisville Water announced the return of Walking Wednesdays, a monthly (May through October) chance for the community to take a walk around the Crescent Hill Reservoir and go inside the historic Crescent Hill Gatehouse for a guided tour and rare look at ornate gothic architecture.
Louisville Water announced that the restoration of our historic Water Tower was about 75% finished. Work began in summer 2022 to restore the Tower and repair the company’s original Pumping Station No. 1 that sits behind it.
CNBC released a report to a national audience declaring Kentucky’s tap water the best in the country. The results were based on J.D. Power data that assessed feedback from water utility customers about their experiences in six areas: quality and reliability, price, conservation, billing and payment, communications, and customer service.
Also in July, Louisville Water announced that more than 200,000 customers had received new meters through the Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) project, which began in 2020. The new milestone meant nearly two-thirds of our customers were enjoying such benefits as an enhanced ability to monitor their water usage through Pure Connect.
The KY/TN Water Professionals Conference in Memphis was an opportunity for utility leaders to learn, collaborate, and connect about how we use water, changing technology, federal guidelines, and customer service. Several Louisville Water team members shared a wealth of knowledge in the educational sessions offered to attendees. Digital Communications Specialist Lauren Horton received the Diversity & Inclusion Award, and Supervisor of Service Applications Chelsey Sparks was one of 16 people across the two states selected to serve in the 2024 Water Professionals Leadership Academy.
Also, the Water Research Foundation published a national research project that Dr. Eric Zhu and his team completed. The project focused on reducing risks in chloraminated water systems, which serve nearly half of the U.S. population.
More than 300 runners and walkers followed a Louisville Pure Tap® 5K course that took them through Frederick Law Olmsted-designed Shawnee and Chickasaw Parks. New for 2023, race participants were invited to bring their dogs to join them. Proceeds from all dog registrations were donated to Friends of Metro Animal Services.
Also, Louisville Water welcomed 300,000 music fans to Bourbon & Beyond and Louder Than Life with unlimited Pure Tap pours. “Visitors probably don’t come just for the water,” said Kayla Hanak, Public Relations Specialist, “but with Louisville Water’s robust presence in this community, they’d be hard pressed not to notice it while they’re here.”
Building on our mission of improving public health and our history of innovation, Louisville Water created a new subsidiary, Blue Focus LLC, that launched its first product, Pure Spout® Filters, which help schools ensure drinking water fountains provide high-quality water.
Also in October, more than 300 people visited the Crescent Hill Reservoir and Gatehouse for a special Walking Wednesday fall open house filled with fun and learning about Louisville Water operations.
The Louisville Water Call Center switched to a new “smarter” system that recognizes customers’ phone numbers and provides detailed information to customer service representatives. The switch was part of a multi-phase project that will bring even more smart features. “2024 is looking very exciting as far as the technology enhancements we plan to bring to Louisville Water’s customers and employees,” said Customer Service Director Megan Hancock.
Also, the Board of Water Works, Louisville Water’s governing body, welcomed a new member: Cathe Dykstra. Her many accomplishments include serving as the Chief Possibility Officer, President, and CEO of Family Scholar House, co-chairing the 2040 Comprehensive Plan for Louisville Metro Government, and receiving the Mayor’s Spirit of Louisville Award.
The spirit of giving overflowed at Louisville Water. Many employees donated time as well as money to the Salvation Army Angel Tree program while employees at both treatment plants teamed up to adopt families at Field Elementary School.
Also, Louisville Water educators helped combat the cold and flu season by sharing a Clean Hands Up! lesson with hundreds of students during National Handwashing Awareness Week. While the educators teach proper handwashing techniques year-round, they use handwashing week as a good opportunity to visit several schools in a few days.