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What's causing the stains at the new River West Festival Park?

Posted at 6:19 PM, Nov 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-08 05:54:43-05

TULSA -- In 2014, Tulsa's River Parks Authority started tearing down what was the old River West Festival Park on the bank of the Arkansas River.

The new $5.5 million park is the host site for Scotfest and Oktoberfest.

After the renovated park opened, cyclists and runners started noticing something strange.

“I've been riding my bike through here for nine years and I’ve noticed the orange and over the years time it's gotten worse and worse," said Kenneth Bacon,.

Kenneth Bacon said he saw orange stains all over the trails, light poles and curbs while riding his bicycle on the trail system.

“I thought it was just fertilizer runoff at first you know the orange stain, I figured it was something in the fertilizer that was doing it and then when i started seeing it on the poles--then I thought I figured the city sees it too," said Bacon.

He was hoping the stains weren’t toxic and reached out to 2 Works For You .

So what's causing the stains? The River Parks Authority said it’s iron coming from a well that they use to irrigate the large park.

“This is not a new problem the park before we renovated it was also on well water and we had stains all over the concrete back then, it's probably just more visible now because the concrete is new," said Matt Meyer, with Tulsa’s River Parks Authority.

Meyer said the water quality tests showed it was OK to use the well water for the sprinkler system.

“The bottom line is we couldn't afford the water bill to have city water to irrigate, now the restrooms and the drinking fountain over there, they are on city water," said Meyer.

Meyer also affirmed the surrounding industrial areas are not contributing to the orange sheen.

“I can see using the well water to save the money and not waste the filtered water for sure," said Bacon.

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