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New Creek Site 14 Dam Rehabilitation

Improved infrastructure protects lives, property, and public works from dam failure.
  • New Creek Site 14 Dam and spillway rehabilitation improved water quality and supply for citizens of Keyser-Gannett Fleming

    New toe drain installation at New Creek Site 14 Dam.

  • New toe drain installation at New Creek Site 14 Dam-Gannett Fleming

    Dam and spillway rehabilitation improved water quality and supply for citizens of Keyser.

U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service, West Virginia State Office

Keyser, West Virginia

Our Role
Investigations, Surveying, Seepage and Stability Analyses, Hydrologic and Hydraulic Modeling, Structural Analyses, Materials Investigations, RCC Mix Design, Design, Construction Management.

114-foot-high by 940-foot-long earthfill dam
Construction Cost
$10 million
2 year 6 months
  • Offers flood protection to downstream residents
  • Provides the City of Keyser with a reliable supply of water 
  • Brought the dam into compliance with current design and performance standards
  • Protects real estate values around the lake and downstream from the dam
  • Extends the dam’s lifespan by another 50 years.

Gannett Fleming was engaged by the Natural Resources Conservation Service to prepare designs and complete plans and specifications for this project on a fast-track schedule. From start-to-finish, the engineering was completed in only 10 weeks.

Once design was completed, construction crews worked around the clock at the New Creek Site 14 Dam in an effort to bring the 1963 watershed dam up to current safety standards. Rehabilitation included replacement of the reinforced concrete principal spillway/intake structure, realignment and reinforcement of the auxiliary spillway utilizing roller compacted concrete, installation of a downstream toe and chimney drainage system, and flattening of the upstream and downstream slopes. A portion of the work was funded by the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act; the remainder was provided by the local sponsor.

What We Did

To rehabilitate the 114-foot-high, 940-foot-long earthfill dam, our work included: 
  • Field investigations, including bathymetric and field surveys, mapping, embankment and conduit inspections; geotechnical subsurface investigations, including geologic mapping, geophysical testing, exploratory drilling, test pits and sampling; and installation of piezometers and data loggers
  • Geophysical surveys, including self-potential survey to identify seepage and a seismic refraction survey to identify top of rock and bedrock seismic velocities
  • Embankment seepage and stability analyses to improve long-term reliability
  • Hydrologic and hydraulic studies to evaluate spillway capacity modifications needed to pass the design storm
  • Conceptual and final design of new roller-compacted concrete (RCC) auxiliary spillway, modifications to the embankment to reduce and control seepage, embankment slope stabilization measures and drainage improvements, new 80-foot-high concrete principal spillway/intake structure and outlet conduit connection, design report, drawing and specification preparation, and construction cost estimate preparation.
  • Construction management.

Key Features

  • New roller-compacted concrete auxiliary spillway and stilling basin
  • New principal spillway/water intake structure and conduit extension
  • Flattened embankment slopes
  • Construction of principal spillway plunge pool
  • New embankment internal drainage system.

Sustainability Features & Outcomes

  • Ground-granulated blast furnace slag, a byproduct of the steel manufacturing industry, was used to replace 42.5 percent of the cement in all conventional concrete 
  • Fly ash, a byproduct of coal-fired power generation, was used to replace 50 percent of the cement in all roller-compacted concrete; using these recycled materials resulted in energy and pollution savings by decreasing the Portland cement usage by approximately 2,850 tons, which directly results in a reduction of approximately 2,850 tons of CO2 emissions and eliminates the need to landfill these industry by‐products
  • Concrete from the old riser structure was recycled, and the excavated materials from the expanded auxiliary spillway were used to improve stability of the upstream and downstream embankment slopes
  • Reuse of an existing reservoir.

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