Pulgas Water Temple

San Francisco, United States

Pulgas Water Temple

9.2

The Pulgas Water Temple is a stone structure in Redwood City, California, United States, designed by architect William G. Merchant. It was erected by the San Francisco Water Department to commemorate the 1934 completion of the Hetch Hetchy Aqueduct and is located at the aqueduct's terminus; originally water flowed through a vault under the temple itself, but new requirements for treatment require it to be diverted to a plant nearby. The name comes from Rancho de las Pulgas, an early Spanish land grant. Pulgas is the Spanish word for "fleas", which were encountered by early Spanish explorers of the area.

The permanent water temple was completed in 1938, replacing an original made largely of plywood. Designed by architect William Merchant and with carving by Albert Bernasconi, it consists of a circle of fluted Corinthian columns surmounted by a large masonry ring bearing the inscription "I give waters in the wilderness and rivers in the desert, to give drink to my people" [from Isaiah 43:20]. There is a reflecting pool lined with cypress trees.

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