|Secretary Kempthorne and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger at the scenic Folsom Dam Overlook in Folsom, Calif. for the historic groundbreaking ceremony to launch construction of the Folsom Dam Joint Federal Project.
[Photo Credit: Tami Heilemann]
SACRAMENTO, Calif.—Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne, joined by California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and other dignitaries, today led an historic groundbreaking ceremony to launch construction of the Folsom Dam Joint Federal Project.
“We are protecting the one million Americans who live in the Sacramento area from the threat of a devastating flood,” Secretary Kempthorne said. “We are protecting the capital of the state of California and its economy -- by itself the world’s 8th largest economy. We are doing this at a savings of nearly $1 billion below the original estimated cost. We are doing it seven years faster than originally estimated.”
The $1.3 billion project will shore up dikes and build a new spillway to drain off the huge influx of water from heavy storms that otherwise might threaten the citizens of Sacramento. It will support more than 2,200 new jobs in the Central Valley. When completed in 2015. Folsom Dam will protect Sacramento from a 200-year flood, two times greater than the current protection.
The groundbreaking ceremony was held at the Folsom Dam Overlook, where the Secretary and Governor were joined by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Brigadier General John McMahon; Rep. Doris Matsui; Rep. Dan Lungren; Rep. John Doolittle; California State Senators Darrell Steinberg and Dave Cox; and Sacramento Mayor Heather Fargo, who represented the Sacramento Area Flood Control Agency.
The Folsom Dam project is an unprecedented partnership among the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Central Valley Flood Protection Board and the Sacramento Area Flood Control Agency.
For the first time ever, the two federal agencies that oversee western dams and waters – the Bureau of Reclamation and the Army Corps of Engineers – have joined forces on a major dam project. It is the largest dam project currently being undertaken by the Bureau of Reclamation anywhere in the country.
In addition to the joint project, the Bureau of Reclamation will complete dam safety work on Dikes 4, 5, and 6, and the Mormon Island Auxiliary Dam. The project will be constructed in three phases. A contract for the first phase was awarded on September 28, 2007, in the amount of $16,068,000 to Kiewit Pacific Company of Concord, Calif.
Additional information on the JFP and flood control is available at: