published Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

Chickamauga Dam concerns

  • photo
    Water pours out of all 11 spillways at Chickamauga dam in this file photo.
    Photo by Dan Henry /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Most of us don't often think about the Chickamauga Dam on the Tennessee River, except when we're boating, swimming or fishing or when we drive across the bridge spanning the dam.

Of course, we enjoy the benefits of the Tennessee Valley Authority-generated electricity the dam helps provide.

The Chickamauga Dam lock was built in the 1940s. The aging lock is crumbling and very much needs to be replaced. The existing 360-foot by 60-foot lock is too small for today's large barges. It also has structural concrete problems.

A new and expanded Chicka-mauga Lock is estimated to cost $693 million, and work could be finished by 2018, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

So far, $186 million has been spent on a bigger replacement lock.

But work on the new lock is on hold because of a lack of money, and President Barack Obama's proposed budget for the 2013 fiscal year does not include any funds to maintain the existing lock.

The Corps estimates it will take at least another $507 million to finish the new lock at the dam.

But funding for repairs and new locks is inadequate because available funds are being absorbed by costly dam and lock repairs to the Olmsted Locks on the Ohio River.

Nevertheless, it's important to this region that we keep the lock open. If it closes, 318 miles of river upstream of Chattanooga would be cut off from river traffic.

8
Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
nucanuck said...

As the primary beneficiary of the dam and lock, it would seem fitting that the TVA service area should be taxed to pay a larger share of the cost to replace the lock.

Responsible government starts with paying for what we use.

Tax us!

March 27, 2012 at 12:52 a.m.
hambone said...

Better yet. Charge those that actually use the lock!

March 27, 2012 at 1:25 a.m.
onetinsoldier said...

Living proof that without socialism, the ignorant natives would still be using coal oil. Everyone say thanks to FDR.

March 27, 2012 at 2:18 a.m.
chet123 said...

CHICKAMAUGA DAM?????DONT THE TAX MONEY GO TO THE DAM?????..WHERE IS ALL THE ANTI-TAX RIGHT-WING NUTS THAT HAVE THEIR BOAT TRAVELING UP AND DOWN THE RIVER..Hmmmm WHERE ARE THEY Hmmmm.. WISH I KNEW WHERE THE ANTI-TAX REPUBLICAN AT NOW

March 27, 2012 at 11:14 a.m.
joneses said...

Chet has the typical liberal solution. Need more money confiscate it from the working populace versus stopping the wasteful spending like buying Government Motors (GM) for more than it was worth.

March 27, 2012 at 3:37 p.m.
Salsa said...

Tax Nucanuck!

March 27, 2012 at 6:53 p.m.
hambone said...

Chuck the stealth congressman has waited till re-election time to start fighting for money for this project.

I was begaining to think he never would!!

March 27, 2012 at 11:26 p.m.
holdout said...

I believe commercial river traffic is heavily taxed already through their fuel taxes and registration fees.

March 29, 2012 at 8:03 a.m.
please login to post a comment

videos »         

photos »         

e-edition »

advertisement
advertisement

Find a Business

400 East 11th St., Chattanooga, TN 37403
General Information (423) 756-6900
Copyright, Permissions, Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy, Ethics policy - Copyright ©2014, Chattanooga Publishing Company, Inc. All rights reserved.
This document may not be reprinted without the express written permission of Chattanooga Publishing Company, Inc.