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Water is resource that is important to any SimCity 4 city. Whilst not as critical as power, zoned areas (residential, commercial and industrial) are limited by a lack of water. Civic buildings are not affected in this manner, although a lack of water for any structure increases its flammability.

Like power, water has a variable demand, which can be viewed on the Water graph. Water can also be traded with neighbouring regions. "No Water" zots will start appearing throughout the city when demand overtakes supply.

Water in SimCity 4 is measured in cubic metres (cu m).

Water Structures[edit]

Water is produced by a few structures. Each, like power plants, has a base maintenance cost and base output. Like power plants, water structures will deteriorate with age, and will need to be replaced regularly. Unlike power plants, water structures do not produce pollution, although excessive water pollution may adversely affect them (to the point of shutting them down in severe cases). Water structures cannot be directly under- or over-funded by examining them, but the water funding can be adjusted through the budget .

Water Tower[edit]

Water Tower
Construction Cost §150 Capacity 2,400 cu m
Maintenance Cost §50 / month Capacity Cost §0.0208 / cu m

The water tower is a basic water structure, fine for small cities but lacking the cost-effectiveness of the more efficient water pump.

Water Pump[edit]

Water Pump
Construction Cost §1,400 Capacity 20,000 cu m
Maintenance Cost §350 / month Capacity Cost §0.0175 / cu m

The water pump is a staple for water production. A typical city will probably require more than one of these to keep up with demand. Build as many as are needed.

Water Treatment Plant[edit]

Water Treatment Plant
Construction Cost §15,000 Capacity 2,400 cu m
Maintenance Cost §350 / month Capacity Cost §0.146 / cu m

The purpose of the water treatment plant is to reduce water pollution in the system. If water pollution is rising above a manageable level, a treatment plant will keep it under control. Water treatment plants have a large yet limited radius, so a large city will require several treatment plants built far enough apart to reduce water pollution effectively. A viable alternative may be to locate and eliminate sources of water pollution (typically farms, coal power plants and dirty industry) rather than spend significant cash on a treatment plant.


Construction Cost §11 / segment Capacity N/A
Maintenance Cost §0.10 / segment / month Capacity Cost N/A

Unlike power, city buildings do not automatically share water between adjacent structures; a pipe network is required to supply a city with the water it needs. Pipes will distribute water up to six squares in cardinal directions, provided they are connected to a water source. If water demand exceeds supply, the pipes will reduce their distribution radius so that not all buildings are covered; building more pipes in this situation will only result in a further reduction of the distribution radius.

An underfunded water system may result in leaking pipes. These leaks can potentially destroy the structures in the tiles above them, and can be repaired using the pipe tool (just click on the leaky pipe). The ultimate solution, however, is to raise funding.

Neighbour Deals[edit]

Water is a tradeable resource between regions. By doing so, cities can sell water to neighbouring cities, or buy it so they don't have to manage water structures themselves. Deals are set up by first establishing a pipe connection to the neighbouring city (it is a good idea to check that the pipe connection links into the neighbour's existing pipe network), and then inspecting the neighbour deals section in the budget. A failure to pay the water bill will result in the water supply being cut off, which is harmful but not necessarily catastrophic to a city.