Tennessee Valley Authority has announced it has completed the Boone Dam project in Tennessee, US, on time and under budget.

The seven-year dam remediation project was undertaken after starting in 2015 after TVA discovered seepage below the dam in 2014 and immediately lowered the lake’s water level to ensure public safety.

The $326 million project involved construction of a composite seepage barrier created in several phases – which included the highly visible, two-year, round-the-clock construction of an underground cutoff wall. Following completion of the underground work, TVA restored the crest of the dam to its previous elevation and constructed a floodwall. Paving and fencing, along with site restoration, round out the project.

TVA Chief Operating Officer Don Moul said the project is a major geotechnical engineering feat.” TVA has delivered on its promise to the Tri-Cities region,” he said. “At the onset of this project, we made a commitment that we would complete this effort safely within seven years and we would do it right the first time with a high-quality repair..”

“The Boone Dam project exemplifies all three aspects of TVA’s mission of service,” added Jeff Lyash, TVA president and chief executive officer. “Environmental stewardship by providing a beautiful recreational area for families to picnic, swim and relax this summer; economic development with a lake that helps communities in the Tri-Cities region prosper from fishing tournaments to boating activities and much more; and electricity that is clean, reliable and generated right here at the Boone Dam hydropower facility.”

Energy generation from Boone Unit 1, which was shut down during construction, will return to normal operations this summer.   

At the project reopening ceremony in late May, TVA recognized three partner groups: Tennessee Wildlife Resources Association (TWRA), Boone Lake Association and Boone Dam Repair Coalition. TWRA partnered by planting grasses and shrubs, creating nurseries for fish, and stocking the lake with F1 largemouth bass. TVA worked closely with its neighbors in the Boone Lake Association and Boone Dam Repair Coalition on community outreach efforts throughout the project. Together, they reached more than 25,000 people at various events.