05-18-17 Northern Water: Chimney Hollow Reservoir receives final approval

Chimney Hollow Reservoir receives final approval

BERTHOUD – The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers has signed the final Record of Decision and approved a 404 Clean Water Act Permit for the Windy Gap Firming Project.

The WGFP is an effort by Northern Water’s Municipal Subdistrict to construct a 90,000 acre-foot reservoir at Chimney Hollow just west of Carter Lake and near Berthoud, CO. The project’s formal environmental permitting process began in October 2003, although the initial development of the WGFP began in the mid-1990s.

“This has been a lengthy process, and Northern Water, its Municipal Subdistrict and the 12 project participants are elated with the news of the 404 permit,” said Project Manager Jeff Drager. “We’re smiling and it makes the timeconsuming and resource-intensive permitting process worth it.”

This 404 CWA permit is the final federal requirement needed to construct Chimney Hollow Reservoir. These additional, critical permits and agreements have already been approved and finalized:

Colorado Fish and Wildlife Mitigation Plan – 2011

Grand County 1041 Permit and related agreements –

2012 Bureau of Reclamation Record of Decision and Carriage Contract – 2014

Colorado 401 Water Quality Certification – 2016

U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s 404 CWA Permit – May 17, 2017

Final design of Chimney Hollow Reservoir is underway and construction is slated to begin in 2019. Water storage in Chimney Hollow Reservoir could occur by 2021 or 2022. The project is anticipated to cost $400 million.

Additional information links:

Army Corps of Engineers press release

U.S. Senator Cory Gardner press release

Windy Gap Firming Project information