ALCOA, Tenn (WVLT) -- Pumping has begun on the new pipeline that takes water out of the Little River above the Rockford Dam and puts it back in the river below the dam.
City of Alcoa spokesperson Patricia Tipton says water is now flowing through the waterline and into Little River on the opposite bank from Alcoa’s existing raw water intake structure.
This is a temporary solution designed to help alleviate the lack of flow in the Little River drainage basin due to the drought.
The water pipeline is above ground now, but will be buried below ground once the water level situation has stabilized.
The new intake structure is a temporary floating device placed in a deep pool near the Rockford Dam on the Little River.
Tipton says water flow downstream of the Alcoa intake increased approximately 13 cubic feet per second.
But, Tipton says flow levels are expected to continue to decrease in the Little River for at least the next week.
Tipton says right now the cities of Alcoa and Maryville remain under voluntary water restrictions.
Alcoa City Manager Mark Johnson expressed his appreciation to all involved in the project by saying, “This project could not have been completed so quickly without the joint cooperation of the engineering staffs of the Cities of Alcoa and Maryville. These groups worked together flawlessly to get the job done.”