ASDSO Dam Safety 2016
OBG water experts recently presented during the Association of State Dam Safety Officials (ASDSO) Dam Safety 2016 conference on September 11–15 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. At this leading conference on dam and levee safety engineering and technology transfer, the OBG team delivered presentations during sessions on Rehabilitation Case Histories for Historic Infrastructure and Dam Removals.
View our presentations:
This presentation focuses on the efforts to stabilize and modernize three of Philadelphia’s historic dams. It highlights the unique undertaking of planning the remediation and construction of notable structures in a major metropolitan setting. Case studies highlight how these structures are subject to the challenges that are archetypal to urban infrastructure and that efforts to modernize and stabilize them are buoyed by the prospect of hydropower, innovation to address environmental impacts, and the desire to preserve symbols of Philadelphia’s engineering history.
The lack of any low level outlet at the Ingham Springs Dam (Solebury Township, Bucks County, Pennsylvania) would have presented a significant challenge in control of water required for the construction of most rehabilitation measures. It presented equal challenges when dam removal became the selected alternative to addressing the 140-year-old earth dam’s deficiencies. The high projected costs of upgrading the dam to current standards and public interest in restoring an open stream channel to convey the upstream spring flow below the dam tipped the scale toward dam breaching. This case study highlights how the proposed approach allowed regulatory approvals to be obtained in a timely manner and allowed the breaching to proceed expeditiously, saving cost and limiting the risk for undesired downstream impacts.