There’s a really cool water temple about 15 miles from me and with today’s clouds I thought it would be a good time to go take a picture or two. I have two images so far; but I’m kind of excited about this one, so I’m posting it by itself here. I love the rotunda and am happy to share it with you here. I’ve included some history about the temple below in case you’re interested.
The Sunol Valley Water Temple, located on the Alameda Watershed near the town of Sunol, marks the confluence of three sources of water flowing into the Sunol Valley of southern Alameda County.
The 1910 beaux arts landmark, built by predecessor, the Spring Valley Water Company, was designed by renowned architect Willis Polk and modeled after the Temple of Vesta in Tivoli, Italy. The converging waters of Alameda Creek, Arroyo de la Laguna, and the Pleasanton Wells poured down into a tile basin at the temple bottom. Though the waters were once used for San Francisco’s water supply before construction of the Hetch Hetchy system, today only a small amount is diverted for local San Francisco Water, Power and Sewer uses and storage. The rest is released into Alameda Creek.
Visitors approach Sunol Temple on a long ceremonial drive lined with lilac bushes. A grove of Lombard poplars surrounds the temple, and a ridge of hills rises behind it.
The 60-foot-high Sunol Water Temple’s red tile roof rests on 12 Corinthian columns. Wedge-shaped paintings adorn the ceiling supported by elaborately decorated beams. The terra cotta roof elements were fabricated by Gladding McBean Tile Company of Los Angeles, and the painted wood ceiling was created by Yun Gee and other artists.
Sunol Water Temple was designated a California Historical Engineering Landmark in 1976 by the American Society of Civil Engineers.