Parker water agency to expand dam |

Parker water agency to expand dam

PARKER ” A dam planned by Parker would be the largest reservoir built on the Front Range in about 40 years.

Parker will use the foundation of the small earthen Rueter Hess Reservoir southwest of town to build a dam that will be more than 60 feet high and can store 72,000 acre feet of water.

An acre foot is enough water for a year for two to four homes, depending on the size of the household.

Frank Jaeger, district manager of Parker Water, said the project will cost about $180 million. It’s expected to take three years to complete.

“The growth in Colorado is not going to stop. It’s not going to stop on the Front Range and it’s not going to stop in this area,” Jaeger said.

The area south of Denver is one of the fastest-growing in Colorado. It’s estimated that 400,000 homes will depend on the reservoir in about 50 years.

The dam will be filled with storm runoff. The water will be used to extend the life of underground municipal wells.

“Rueter-Hess is testament to a new way in which we will manage a very short supply of water that we have here in the west,” Sen. Ken Salazar, D-Colo., said Friday during a ceremony dedicating the project.

Parker will own most of the storage capacity in Rueter Hess, but Castle Rock, Castle Pines North and Stonegate will also share in the project.

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