The 260 mile long Kentucky River runs from the southeast corner of the state to the Ohio River near Louisville. The 450,000 people of Lexington rely on the river for a majority of their drinking water. Due growth of the population and deterioration of the existing structures, the Kentucky River Authority began renovations on the 14 locks and dams along the river to increase the life and storage volume for the city’s water supplies.
Work at Lock #9 called for replacing the existing dam while raising the pool elevation. The new dam was constructed immediately up river of the existing using steel caissons and underwater concrete placement. The increased fall distance in the emergency spillway created concerns of erosion of both the spillway bank, and the base of the dam itself. Due to the challenges of the river site, which included frequent flooding, precast concrete was the solution.
Oldcastle Precast had special molds fabricated to create the custom interlocking shapes as designed by the project engineers. The project required 113 pieces weighing 26,000 lbs each for a total of 1500 tons. Difficult site access to the river gorge on winding rural roads and limited site storage required skilled just-in-time transportation management and execution. Oldcastle Precast delivered.