Aspinall Unit update: 600 cfs in the Black Canyon next week — target level for the brown trout spawn


From email from Reclamation (Erik Knight):

As per normal fall reservoir operations, releases from the Aspinall Unit will be decreased over the next few weeks in response to the seasonal shutdown of the Gunnison Tunnel and the brown trout spawn. Gunnison Tunnel diversions were decreased by 100 cfs yesterday so releases from Crystal will follow this and make an additional 100 cfs reduction today, October 11th. This total reduction of 200 cfs will bring Crystal releases down to 1600 cfs and flows in the Gunnison River through the Black Canyon down to 850 cfs by the end of today. This year’s river target level for the brown trout spawn will be 600 cfs which will be reached sometime within the next week.

More Aspinall Unit coverage here.

Colorado River District fourth quarterly board meeting October 18-19


Here’s the link to the board memo page with the agenda.

More Colorado River basin coverage here.

Denver Water is constructing a new ten million gallon finished water tank in Lone Tree


Here’s a report from the Lone Tree Voice (Chris Michlewicz). Click through for the photo slidshow. Here’s an excerpt:

The Denver Water project was delayed two days because of the rainy weather Oct. 8, but sunny skies helped more than 50 workers as the concrete pour got underway just north of Eagle Ridge Elementary School. More than 120 cement trucks backed up to the edge of a deep pit that was excavated in advance of the pour. More than 1,400 cubic yards of concrete will be used on the tank, which is being built adjacent to an existing underground tank near Chaparral Road and Sagebrush Trail. Several community meetings were intended to help surrounding residents understand the size and scope of the project, which is scheduled for completion next summer…

“Because of the current limited storage capacity at the site, Denver Water has made it a priority to increase storage in Lone Tree,” an announcement from the water provider says. The concrete foundation, estimated at 280 feet in diameter, required two concrete batch plants to shut down to other customers for the entire day.

More coverage from Bruce Finley writing for The Denver Post. From the article:

It is the first of eight projects in a $120 million rehabilitation of metro-area plumbing.

Denver Water maintains at least 30 of these underground reservoirs, some holding as much as 25 million gallons, with the system storing 350 million gallons overall. The hidden tanks are a crucial part of making sure that clean water comes out when when 1.3 million Denver Water customers turn on their faucets — even if a pipeline ruptures or a water plant has to shut down.

Paying the $120 million for the fixes over the next decade is expected to boost water bills, which already are increasing by about 5.5 percent a year.
Denver Water officials said there is no way around the re-plumbing because inspectors who went inside emptied reservoirs found enough cracks and infiltration to warrant repairs.

“It’s a big deal. We have to do it. This is the least intrusive we can get,” said Denver Water’s engineering director Robert Mahoney. “This eliminates the risk of us not getting our water.”

Here’s a slideshow, Journey of water, from Denver Water about their system.

More infrastructure coverage here.

NSF Selects CU Denver Research Team To Study Sustainability Of Cities: The $750,000 grant will lead to greater progress and wider exposure for new developments in sustainable cities


Here’s the release from the University of Colorado at Denver:

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has selected a team of University of Colorado Denver researchers to be part of the new Sustainable Cities – People, Infrastructures and the Energy-Climate-Water Nexus project. Professor Anu Amaswami, PhD., is leading the project, which includes 20 U.S. universities, two national labs and three international partners. The $750,000 grant aims to bring together scientists from all over the world whose work will lead to greater progress and wider exposure for new developments in sustainable cities.

Professor Ramaswami is the director of the Center for Sustainable Infrastructure Systems (CSIS), which will manage the project. CSIS is in the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences and aims to design and analyze sustainable urban infrastructure and integrate new, sustainable technologies with the general public.

The NSF has a new emphasis on science, engineering and education for sustainability. One of its focus areas is to create what the NSF is calling Research Coordination Networks (RCN) that study sustainability. Sustainable Cities – People, Infrastructures and the Energy-Climate-Water Nexus is one of 94 RCNs funded on sustainability. The focus of CU Denver’s RCN is on reducing energy use, carbon emissions and mitigating climate-risks to water supply and public health in cities.

Ramaswami’s co-principal investigators are Larry Baker (University of Minnesota), Larry Bank (City College New York), Marian Chertow (Yale), and Paty Romero-Lankao (National Center for Atmospheric Research). A unique aspect of this RCN is broad-based integration of urban ecology, industrial ecology, atmospheric sciences, infrastructure engineering, architecture, urban planning, behavioral sciences, public affairs and public health toward the goal of sustainable cities. This grant seeks to develop harmonized methods, open datasets and shared curriculum on the topic of sustainable cities across 20 U.S. universities.

The project is scheduled to last four years, starting in January 2012. CU Denver’s CSIS team is fortunate to lead a fantastic group of faculty collaborators from across the U.S. and the world to coordinate work on the over-arching theme of sustainable cities.

Fountain Creek: Removal of old railroad bridge near the confluence with the Arkansas River for flood mitigation has begun


From The Pueblo Chieftain (Chris Woodka):

Edward Kraemer & Sons will perform the work under contract with the Union Pacific Railroad, and completion is expected in a few weeks, said Daryl Wood, stormwater utility supervisor for the city of Pueblo. The bridge is located just upstream of the confluence of Fountain Creek at the Arkansas River. “The lower part of the bridge is the problem,” Wood said.

During a large flood, debris could hang up on the iron deck supports and act as a dam. Water potentially could top the levee system in that area and flood nearby neighborhoods. Last month’s flood, described as a 10-year event, left some tree limbs hung up on the piers of the bridge, but most of the debris passed through and settled somewhere downstream. There were problems with sediment deposits and trees on parts of the pedestrian-bicycle trail along Fountain Creek as well.

More Fountain Creek coverage here and here.