T H E
1923 OUC charter is drafted; first Commission meeting held.
N E W
F R O N T I E R
Lake Ivanhoe water
• OUC moves into its new
plant is placed into service.
hen OUC was born, Florida — and Orlando — were at the height
plant was finished, bringing generating capacity
Wall Street and North
of economic prosperity. Hundreds of thousands of people had
to 9 megawatts (MW).
descended on the state during the early ‘20s, lured by windfall
Court decision enables
OUC to improve
customer base. During this time, OUC completed
improvement program to provide the infrastructure for development. Notable
two additions to the Lake Ivanhoe Plant and also
Auditorium (now the Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre) in 1926. But, the second half of the “Roaring Twenties” told a different story. Florida’s land boom began to fizzle. Investors pulled out, and the pace of growth slowed. In 1928, the San Felipe-Lake Okeechobee Hurricane cut a swath through the state, leaving widespread destruction — a metaphoric harbinger of what would soon follow. The next year, the Stock
Establishing an Infrastructure
purchase the privately held Orlando Water &
• Curtis H. Stanton becomes
Light Company, they were setting the stage for
When Orlando residents voted in 1923 to
Federal Water Pollution
Lake Highland Plant
Control Act becomes law.
Orange Avenue, at the south end of the distribution system; the other tank was installed on Washington Street on the system’s east side. At the time, Lakes Highland and Ivanhoe were OUC’s primary sources of drinking water. However, dry conditions reported in 1927 lowered
that would provide the infrastructure for growth.
water levels in these lakes, making it necessary to
During that year, a special act of the Florida
tap remote Lake Underhill as an additional supply
Legislature created the Orlando Utilities
source. A 24-inch raw water pipe was constructed
Commission, providing it with full authority to
to connect Lake Underhill to the plant on Lake
operate the water and power plants as a
Ivanhoe. Two filters were added to the Lake
municipal utility. OUC began serving 2,795
Ivanhoe Plant, each with a capacity of 2 MGD,
electric and 2,290 water customers for a total
bringing the total filtration capacity of the plant
investment of $1.5 million.
to 8 MGD.
facilities located on Lake Ivanhoe were just Lake Ivanhoe Plant
consumption was down. The “Old Copeland Tank” was located on Copeland Drive west of
generations of high-quality, reliable utility service
At that time, the new water and electric plant
system. The tanks were strategically placed to
The tanks were then refilled at night when
in just seven years.
amount of water pressure at the extremities of the release water flow that boosted pressure when it
utilities for the
a 224 percent increase
In 1926, OUC built two 250,000-gallon elevated water storage tanks to maintain an acceptable
was excessively low, during times of high use.
25 years of providing
13,000 customers —
and World War II, Orlando persevered — and its fledgling utility grew into a trusted and reliable partner.
• OUC proudly celebrates
OUC installs underground feeder lines with funds from federal government.
opened its first office building located at the intersection of Washington and Main streets in
Market crash of 1929 launched the world into two decades of turmoil. But, through the Great Depression
General Manager of OUC.
OUC has more than
Through the next two decades, the citizenowned utility grew rapidly to serve its expanding
profits from land speculation. To keep up, the City embarked on a costly
City Council approval.
O U C I S C R E A T E D T O P R O V I D E H I G H – Q U A L I T Y WAT E R A N D E L E C T R I C I T Y
additions to the landscape during that time included the Orlando Public Library in 1923 and the Municipal
First addition to Lake Ivanhoe power plant is completed.
building at the corner of
• Martin Brown is named General Manager.
MERS CUSTO C I R ELECT RS STOME U 2,795 C R WATE 2,290 ED EES NERAT MPLOY E E G H 0 W 5 DM OUSAN NS 7 TH GALLO ED N O I P L M PU MIL .67 OF WATER
By 1930, Orlando’s population had grown to 27,330, and OUC had more than 13,000
nearing completion. In 1924, the water plant
customers — a 224 percent increase in just seven
was placed into service with a rated capacity of
years. That year, the utility generated more than
4 million gallons per day (MGD). Two years later,
14 million kilowatts (kW) and pumped 814 million
the first addition to the electric portion of the
gallons of water.