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Arkansas Valley Conduit

Description

The Arkansas Valley Conduit (AVC) is a 130-mile pipeline with spurs that would serve as many as 40 communities and 50,000 people east of Pueblo. It will deliver filtered water ready for treatment from Pueblo Reservoir. The AVC will supplement existing water supplies, which face state compliance issues because of salinity or radionuclide contamination. Most of the participants rely on groundwater, and need a reliable supply of fresh water.History

The cities of the Lower Arkansas Valley in Colorado have awaited the construction of the AVC for decades. The AVC was authorized by Congress as part of the Fryingpan-Arkansas Project in 1962. It never was built largely because of the inability of participants to repay construction costs. In 2009, Congress amended the original Fry-Ark legislation. The amendment featured a cost-sharing plan with 65 percent federal and 35 percent local funding. The locally funded portion will be repaid by the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District (District) to the federal government over a period of 50 years.

AVC Progress Repor

The Arkansas Valley is on pace to begin construction in the fall of 2022. Federal appropriations of about $40 million will fund the first portion of the pipeline to serve Boone and Avondale.

The Bureau of Reclamation is building the trunk line of the AVC, while the Southeastern District will build spurs and delivery lines to water providers who are AVC participants. The project’s overall cost will be between $564 million and $610 million.

AVC will use Fryingpan-Arkansas water or water from participants’ sources stored in Pueblo Reservoir.  Pueblo Water will treat the water and transmit it to a point at the east end of its system.

Participants will be connected to the AVC trunk line as it reaches their area. This will allow communities whose supplies are contaminated from radionuclides to receive clean drinking water years sooner than the completion of the entire AVC. Most of those communities are in Otero County, near the middle of the AVC route.    

It is estimated the project will reach Lamar in 2035.                                                                                                                                                         

Milestones  

October 3, 2020 - AVC Groundbreaking Ceremony. Interior Secretary David Bernhardt, Senator Michael Bennet and Senator Cory Gardner were among dignitaries who gathered at Pueblo Dam for the groundbreaking of the Arkansas Valley Conduit. Several state lawmakers, Department of Natural Resources Director Dan Gibbs and Colorado Water Conservation Board Executive Director Becky Mitchell attended. Southeastern Board members and AVC participants came as well. 

2020 - The AVC received $28 million in federal funding to finish design and begin construction of the long-awaited pipeline. The Colorado General Assembly approved authorization of a Colorado Water Conservation Board financial package of up to $100 million for AVC, and Governor Jared Polis signed the bill into law.                                        

2014 – Reclamation issued a Record of Decision for the AVC, which established a route (Comanche North) and scope of work for the project. 

2013 – The Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) completed a Final Environmental Impact Statement for the AVC.

2013—Regional Water Conservation Plan in Support of Arkansas Valley Conduit and Related Projects completed by the District.    

2009 – P.L. 111-11 passed, allowing miscellaneous revenues (excess-capacity contract payments) from the Fryingpan-Arkansas Project to be applied to AVC construction and repayment. These payments will be available beginning in 2022 and initially total about $3.5 million annually, increasing in future years.

         

Pueblo County

  • Town of Boone
  • Avondale Water & Sanitation

Crowley County

  • 96 Pipeline Company
  • Crowley County Water Association
  • Town of Crowley
  • Town of Olney Springs
  • Town of Ordway
  • Town of Sugar City

Bent County

  • Hasty Water Company
  • City of Las Animas
  • McClave Water Association

Prowers County

  • City of Lamar
  • May Valley Water Association
  • Town of Wiley

Kiowa County 

  • Town of Eads

Otero County 

  • Beehive Water Association

  • Bents Fort Water Company

  • Town of Cheraw

  • East End Water Association

  • Eureka Water Company

  • Fayette Water Association

  • Town of Fowler

  • Hilltop Water Company

  • Holbrook Center Soft Water

  • Homestead Improvement Association

  • City of La Junta

  • Town of Manzanola

  • Newdale-Grand Valley North Holbrook Water

  • Patterson Valley

  • Riverside Water Company

  • City of Rocky Ford

  • South Side Water Association

  • South Swink Water Company

  • Town of Swink

  • Valley Water Company

  • Vroman Water Company

  • West Grand Valley Water

  • West Holbrook Water

 

Click Here for the Final Environmental Impact Statement

For more information:  https://www.usbr.gov/gp/ecao/avc/