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   The History Behind City Utilities
Residential Home Springfield has always been blessed with a progressive and farsighted utility structure, dating from the opening of the gas works of the Springfield Gas Lighting Company in 1874.

In 1945, Springfield Gas and Electric was purchased by the city, marking the birth of City Utilities.

In the Beginning
The closing months of 1944 marked a time of tense optimism in Springfield, as it was throughout the United States. The news reports from both fronts were generally good, and it appeared that the war in Europe might end within a matter of months. The devastating economic sacrifices of the war effort, and the depression years before it, were about to be supplanted by an era of postwar production and prosperity. It was against this backdrop that the Springfield City Council voted unanimously to purchase the assets of the privately owned Springfield Gas and Electric company, also the operator of the city transit system. The finalization of this transaction in 1945 marked the birth of City Utilities.

To be sure, Springfieldians have witnessed some incredible changes in the size, demography, and even the flavor of their city since 1945. But through it all, City Utilities has strived to provide the best possible service at the lowest possible cost, and has made a modest contribution toward the quality of life in a truly quality city.

Coming Together
The City of Springfield had made at least four attempts to purchase the Springfield Water Works between 1936 and 1953, but negotiators were never able to reach a purchase agreement. Finally, in 1957, an agreement was negotiated and voters approved the purchase, resulting in the Springfield City Water Company officially becoming the Water Department of City Utilities.

Historical Highlights
1838 - 1890
  • 1838 - City of Springfield incorporated
  • 1847 - First public water cistern
  • 1869 - Springfield Gas Light Company incorporated
  • 1880 - Springfield Railway Company franchised; horse-drawn street cars
  • 1881 - People’s Railway Company franchised
  • 1882 - Springfield Water Company franchise approved by citizens
  • 1883 - First waterworks built at Fulbright Spring
  • 1883 - Springfield Electric Company formed
  • 1886 - Two railway companies merge to form Citizens Street Railway Company; three years later, horse-drawn street cars replaced by motor-powered trolleys
  • 1889 - First waterworks sold to become Springfield Water Works Company
  • 1890 - Springfield Gas Light Company purchased by Mr. Henning of Chicago
1893 - 1940
  • 1893 - Gas and electric companies merge to form Springfield Lighting Company
  • 1895 - Springfield Traction Company purchases former trolley services
  • 1899 - Springfield Water Works Company acquires Valley Water Mill
  • 1902 - Springfield Lighting Company sold, becomes Springfield Gas & Electric
  • 1906 - Springfield Traction Company sold to owner of Springfield Gas & Electric, placing all city streetcar lines under common ownership for first time
  • 1910 - First water filtration plant built at Fulbright Spring
  • 1927 - McDaniel Lake and pump station completed
  • 1930 - Natural gas pipeline comes to Springfield
  • 1938 - Fixed route buses replace trolleys
  • 1940 - Fulbright Water Treatment Plant completed
1945 - 1988
  • 1945 - Springfield Gas and Electric purchased by city, marking the birth of CU
  • 1954 - Fellows Lake dedicated
  • 1957 - Springfield Water Works purchased by CU
  • 1957 - Power generation begins at James River Power Station
  • 1968 - Main Avenue turbine begins operation
  • 1976 - Power generation begins at Southwest Power Station
  • 1980 - Blackman Water Treatment Plant (BWTP) in service
  • 1983 - Eleven mile, 36-inch pipeline from BWTP to Fellows Lake completed
  • 1984 - Construction of Transit’s Downtown Transfer Facility begins
  • 1988 - 345-kV transmission line completed
1993 - 1999
  • 1993 - Fulbright Spring becomes a National Historic Landmark
  • 1992 - Access Express buses for physically challenged added to Transit’s fleet
  • 1993 - Partnership Industrial Center opens
  • 1995 - Saul A. Nuccitelli pipeline from Stockton to Fellows Lake completed
  • 1996 - The TecHOUSE opens, a one-stop-shop for builders and developers doing business with CU
  • 1996 - Second, 20-mile natural gas transmission pipeline completed
  • 1998 - Transit adds ten low-floor buses to fleet allowing wheelchair passengers access to fixed-route service
  • 1999 - SpringNet, an all-fiber internet and service provider, introduced
2002 - 2007
  • 2002 - Partnership Industrial Center West opens
  • 2002 - McCartney Generating Station completed
  • 2002 - Partnership with the City of Springfield and Greene County culminates with the completion of the public safety trunked radio system
  • 2003 - Construction of wind turbine and solar panel completed
  • 2003 - SpringNet Underground, a highly secure data collocation facility, opens for business
  • 2006 - CU EnergyWise efficiency programs & rebates initiated
  • 2006 - Noble Hill Landfill Renewable Energy Center begins operation
  • 2006 - Voters approve bond issue for Southwest Power Station Unit 2
  • 2007 - Lake Springfield Natural Gas Peaking Station placed in service
  • 2007 - Construction begins on new 48-inch water main from Fellows Lake to BWTP
  • 2007 - CU celebrates 50th anniversary of water system and James River Power Station
2008 - Current
  • 2008 - Missouri Carbon Sequestration coalition formed
  • 2008 - High-volume outage phone reporting system in place
  • 2008 - Major pipeline from Fellows Lake to Blackman Water Treatment Plant
  • 2009 - Natural Gas Eastern Loop extended
  • 2009 - Mobile work management system in service
  • 2009 - Odd-Even lawn watering program initiated
  • 2010 - Southwest Power Station Unit 2 start-up
  • 2010 - New Paratransit fleet hits the streets
  • 2011 – New Smart Meters installed
  • 2011 – CU earns APPA’s E. F. Scattergood System Achievement Award
  • 2011 – New electric substation communications system installed
  • 2011 – Google Transit, online trip planner, debuts
  • 2012 – CU breaks ground on Boonville Maintenance Campus project
  • 2012 - "Manage My Account" for customers goes live online
  • 2012 - Outage map shows electric system status at www.cityutilities.net