This capital improvements project includes major modifications to the outlet works at Nichols dam and at McClure dam. Also included are improvements to the existing pipeline that feeds the Canyon Road Water Treatment Plant (CRWTP) from Nichols dam.
Inclined Intake Structure Improvements at Nichols Dam & McClure Dam
Outlet works improvements are needed to improve dam safety, operating personnel safety, and to provide more precise flow control of reservoir releases. The intake tower portion of the outlet works are over 70 years old. New inclined intake structures will replace the original intake towers. Direct access from the dam crest will improve operator safety eliminating the use of a boat or walking over ice and then climbing a tower. Dam safety will be increased with the installation of intake valving and a redundant emergency drain valve system which can be controlled from either the dam crest or remotely at the CRWTP and with improved dam instrumentation.
The cost for the construction of new inclined intake structures is estimated at $6,000,000. Engineering plans have been prepared and permit applications to alter or rehabilitate a dam and reservoir have been submitted to the Office of State Engineer (OSE) Dam Safety Bureau. Once an OSE permits have been issued, a construction contract will be procured. Construction will require that the reservoirs be drained, so work will be done on one reservoir at a time.
Inclined intake structure construction will begin a Nichols Dam and Reservoir in September 2013 and take approximately 8 months to complete. Work at McClure will begin in September 2014 and also take 8 months to complete.
CRWTP Raw Water Supply Pipeline Rehabilitation
The existing pipeline is about 40 years old and requires relining. The pipeline carries untreated water from Nichols dam to the CRWTP for treatment. The existing pipeline is located in the Santa Fe River channel and is about 3,500 feet long with about 2,300 feet of pipeline that is elevated above ground on concrete supports. The existing pipeline runs through city property and in an easement through the Randall Davey Audubon Center property and The Nature Conservancy property.
At the request of the property owners, the City is investigating alternate pipeline routes which would move the pipeline out of the river and maximize installation along existing roads in addition to the existing pipeline route. An “Analysis of Alternatives for the Replacement of the Water Treatment Pipeline” report considers four options. The City is also studying a modified alignment for gravity service and pipeline with siphon configuration that will be added to the report.
A new flow control and metering station to feed to the Santa Fe River with water stored in Nichols reservoir is also included in the pipeline project. As part of the living river program, reservoir water will be released at specified flow rates and times.
Construction plans and permitting work is pending route selection. An environmental survey along the existing pipeline route has been conducted and identifies wetlands and riparian areas. Once route selection has been made, preparation of engineering plans and obtaining of permits is estimated to take 6 -8 months. Construction is expected to take 8 – 12 months. The preliminary construction cost estimate for the pipeline is about $1,000,000.
Robert Jorgensen, PE is the project manager and can be contacted at or at (505) 955-4265. Address mail as follows:
City of Santa Fe – Water Division
P.O. Box 909
Santa Fe, NM 87504-0909