A state of limbo continues for New Mexico's last wild river, but limbo's just fine when you're protecting a natural resource like the Gila Wilderness. It provides protectors of the wild more time to spread the word, namely: the ISC's Gila River diversion schemes are far too expensive for the NM taxpayer, far too inefficient at "producing" water, and far too costly when it comes to their irreversible negative effects on the land.
Although it is helpful to be familiar with every feature of your cistern system during the costestimating process, this knowledge is not required to arrive at an accurate estimate. Obvious costs include the tank(s), delivery system, pump, pipe connections, excavation and backfilling. Less obvious cistern system expenditures include a pumphouse, a sediment trap, a vent, overflow piping (and associated erosion control structure[s]), a pressure tank, a level reader, at least two 110-volt (minimum) electrical circuits, a float switch and the cost of removing (or using) excess dirt from the excavation process.
It is great to see this piece in The Guardian showing how rainwater harvesting is being incorporated into architecture these days. Some of these buildings are in regions that get quite a bit rain, too. Harvesting rain is always a good idea even in areas not prone to droughts. Every drop harvested is another saved for a river, aquifer, or wetland. Harvesting also presents a buffer that reduces the erosive effects of stormwater runoff. For more, check out my book, "Harvest the Rain," which delves deeply into the benefits of roofwater catchment.
It is possible to design your own landscape and cistern system, particularly if they are relatively simple. However, most large-scale or complex systems and landscapes are best designed by professionals who know the details of project planning and design.
Now that you have chosen a workable landscape design option, you can estimate the cost of your landscape installation project. The cost-estimating procedure presented in this manual is based on the categories of common roof-reliant landscape features that were outlined in the previous chapter, and it will enable you to calculate a reasonably accurate financial picture of your project.