On January 25, 1898, Seattle Ordinance 4764 authorizes the laying of a water main from Blaine Street and 3rd Avenue W to the Fort Lawton Army Post on Magnolia Bluff. This is the first system to run outside of city limits to supply water to a distant point. The system is more than 18,000 feet long, and runs through a six-inch pipe.
A provision of the ordinance required that government authorities pay eight cents for every thousand gallons received. The United States War Department concurred, and construction began in April 1898. No meter was used on the system until 1900. From 1900 to 1904, the Fort used close to five million cubic feet of water at a cost of more than $3,000.
By 1910, the main proved to be inadequate. The W Dravus Street tank at 38th Avenue W and W Dravus Street was built under Ordinance 26205 in 1911. A 12-inch main was run along Dravus Street, and an electric pump was installed to supply 1,400,000 gallons a day to the Magnolia Tank and Queen Anne standpipes.