Sanchez Reservoir: The Rio Grande Basin roundtable approves $95,000 for improvements

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From the Valley Courier (Ruth Heide):

The mechanism that keeps the water flowing when it should and contains it when it shouldn’t is a tower only accessible by a cable and gondola across the water. Although a tramway engineer inspected the cable and said it was safe, he and the folks who operate it would like to see some improvements for safety purposes.

As part of a first rehabilitation phase, the Sanchez Ditch & Reservoir Company sought funding this month from the Rio Grande Roundtable to perform a gondola and tramway feasibility study, make operational and safety repairs and install an automated hydraulic system. The district requested $10,000 from local basin funds and $85,000 from state water funds, which will go before the Colorado Water Conservation Board for ultimate approval. The reservoir company is putting $33,160 of its own money into the project as well…

He described the 150-foot-high tower in the reservoir that controls, through a series of valves and gates, the flows in and out of the reservoir. The tower was designed in 1910. Robinson said the system currently is labor intensive, and the reservoir company would like to make upgrades that would make it more efficient. For example, if the company had an automated system, adjustments to water levels could be made without physically going to the tower. Cutting down the trips back and forth to the tower would decrease the safety risks of using the cable and tramway system, he added…

The budget for this phase includes: $6,160 for cylinder repair/upgrades; $4,600 for gondola/tramway evaluation; $22,400 for gondola repairs/upgrade; $10,000 for feasibility study; $40,000 for the hydraulic system; $25,000 for solar system for alternative power to the generator that is currently used for power; $5,000 for vandalism prevention; $9,600 for supervision/administration; and $5,400 for contingency.

More Rio Grande River basin coverage here.

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