News Release Archive

Reclamation to Begin Survey Work for Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project

Media Contact: Stan Powers, 970-385-6555
Barry Longwell, 970-259-1110 ext.1008

For Release: March 12, 2010

Reclamation's Four Corners Construction Office will begin survey work for the western portion of the Navajo Gallup Water Supply Project on March 15, 2010. This work will establish the topography necessary to design the water supply pipeline. Approximately 350 photo panels will be set along Highway N36 from Fruitland to Shiprock, NM; Highway 491 from Shiprock to Gallup, NM; Highway N9 from Twin Lakes to Crown Point, NM; and Highway 264 from Yah-ta-Hey, NM to Window Rock, AZ. GPS survey equipment will be used to locate all the panels which will then be photographed from an airplane flying at approximately 3,600 feet above the ground.

The Navajo Gallup Water Supply Project (NGWSP) was authorized for construction by Public Law 111-11 as a major component of the Navajo Nation San Juan River Basin Water Rights Settlement in New Mexico. Once completed, the NGWSP will provide a reliable municipal, industrial, and domestic water supply to Navajo Nation communities, the city of Gallup, NM, Window Rock and Fort Defiance in AZ, the Navajo Agricultural Products Industry, and a portion of the Jicarilla Apache Nation Reservation. These areas currently rely on a rapidly depleting groundwater supply that is of poor quality and inadequate to meet the current and future needs.

The NGWSP will divert a total of 37,764 acre-feet of water annually from the San Juan River and the existing Cutter Reservoir, treat the water at two water treatment plants, and deliver water to the cities and chapters via 260 miles of pipeline and 24 pumping plants. The project is designed to provide for the water needs of approximately 250,000 people in these Native American communities by the year 2040.

The San Juan River diversion will occur downstream of Fruitland, just above the Public Service Company of New Mexico diversion structure. The water will be treated to drinking water standards at a treatment plant to be constructed near the diversion and piped along Highway N36 and south along U.S. Highway 491to provide water to the Navajo Indian Irrigation Project, the adjacent Navajo Chapters, and the city of Gallup. Pipelines will also be constructed to provide water to Crownpoint and the adjacent Navajo Chapters and to Window Rock, Fort Defiance, and adjacent Navajo Chapters. The Gallup Regional System will be constructed to distribute water throughout the city and to nearby Navajo Chapters.

On the eastern side, water will be diverted from the Cutter Reservoir, treated at a water treatment plant located near the base of the dam, and piped south along U.S. Highway 550 to provide water to adjacent Navajo Chapters, the Jicarilla Apache Nation, and additional Navajo Chapters south of the highway.

The authorizing legislation requires completion of construction of all NGWSP features no later than December 31, 2024.

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The Bureau of Reclamation is a federal agency under the U.S. Department of the Interior and is the nation's largest wholesale water supplier and second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Our facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation opportunities, and environmental benefits. Visit our website at and follow us on Twitter @USBR; Facebook @bureau.of.reclamation; LinkedIn @Bureau of Reclamation; Instagram @bureau_of_reclamation; and YouTube @reclamation.