Michigan Ditch tunnel update

Joe Wright Reservoir (Courtesy of Dick Stenzel at the Applegate Group) and the City of Fort Collins.
Joe Wright Reservoir (Courtesy of Dick Stenzel at the Applegate Group) and the City of Fort Collins.

From the Fort Collins Coloradoan (Kevin Duggan):

After overcoming equipment problems and putting in 24-hour work days, crews on Wednesday were within 35 feet of reaching the end of what will be a 764-foot-long tunnel.

“We’ve made tremendous progress …,” said Owen Randall, chief engineer with Fort Collins Utilities. “We should be out sometime (Thursday) or Friday at the very latest.”

Breaking through the mountain will be done slowly and carefully to avoid destabilizing the mountainside, he said.

Crews still have four to six weeks of work to wrap up the project, which will carry Michigan Ditch and its valuable water to city-owned Joe Wright Reservoir near Cameron Pass.

Dismantling and removing a custom-built tunnel boring machine from the mountain will take three to four days. Hydraulic and electronic equipment used to operate the machine will be stripped from the tunnel before a 60-inch diameter pipe is installed to carry the water.

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