Peachoid Water TowerChicago Bridge and Iron Company
Peachoid Road, Gaffney, South Carolina, 29341, United States
built c. 1981
North side of I-85 between exits 90 and 92; a service road runs between the two exits. A small parking lot is at the base.
About the Artist/Site
In 1981 the Gaffney Board of Public Works commissioned the Chicago Bridge and Iron Company (winner of an open bid) to create a monumental elevated storage facility capable of holding one million gallons of water. The shape of a peach was selected to emphasize the fact that South Carolina generally produces more peaches than Georgia, whose motto is the “Peach State.” The design includes a stem measuring 12 feet long and 18 inches in diameter, which was added to the top, and a seven-ton, 60-foot-long leaf which is laid across the structure; it was finished off with an enormous cleft and a nipple added to the bottom. The 135-foot-high tank took five months to design and mold the steel, and a foundation containing ten million pounds of concrete was poured to support the structure.
The CB&I crew originally painted the tank stem brown and the ball yellow, but after numerous complaints and jokes that the structure looked like a big butt, New Jersey painter Peter Freudenberg was commissioned to paint the tank to more realistically look like a peach. He used fifty gallons of paint mixed to create twenty colors. It was financed through a combination of federal funds from the Appalachian Regional Commission and the South Carolina Appalachian Council of Governments.
The Peachoid has been seen in Netflix’s House of Cards series, and each year the South Carolina Peach Festival helps to celebrate Gaffney County’s most famous fruit. The monumental tank can be seen from Interstate 85 near the exit for SC Highway 11, the Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway.
~Jo Farb Hernández, 2014
Map & Site Information
Gaffney, South Carolina, 29341 us
Latitude/Longitude: 35.0917736 / -81.6901959
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