Rio Grande Reservoir project on schedule

Moltz Civil LLC crews work on the metal on the new intake structure to the tunnel that was replaced this winter at the Rio Grande Reservoir. Courtesy photo by Robert Phillips

CREEDE— Moltz Civil LLC is on schedule with the Rio Grande Reservoir Phase II Rehabilitation Project for 2019 despite the intense weather conditions they have seen in the upper Rio Grande Basin this last winter.
Crews were finishing up assembling the intake trash rack and stop log assembly on Saturday after 30 inches of new snow had fallen at the site two days before. Water will soon be released from the coffer dam and stored up against the guard gates of the intake structure that are installed behind the trash rack.
Project staff have also finished the scheduled 2018-19 upstream tunnel rehabilitation which was comprised of shotcrete and rock bolt placement along the rib and crowns of the tunnel, the placement of a concrete grout curtain protruding from the parameter of the tunnel and a concrete tunnel invert placement.
In the downstream tunnel, project staff installed approximately 220 feet of 10.5 ft. diameter steel pipe and encased the large diameter pipe within 1.5 feet of the top of the tunnel with concrete.  The San Luis Valley Irrigation District Board of Directors are happy with the work that has been completed on the project so far and the collaboration of all partners involved towards the process of its completion.
SLV Irrigation District Superintendent Robert Phillips said the contractors will work in the tunnel until the first of April when irrigation season begins. They will come back at the close of the irrigation season this fall in November and continue working through next winter.
This is a two-year project. The rehabilitation involves replacing the 100-year old outlet works, which required draining the reservoir and controlling inflows while a 10 1/2 foot diameter pipe is installed in the outlet tunnel and the existing outlet gates are replaced. Anyone with any questions about this project, please call the San Luis Valley Irrigation District office located in Center at 719-754-2254 or see


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