The water and power control center for the Colorado-Big Thompson Project's reservoirs, power plants, and transmission lines in Wyoming, Colorado, and western Nebraska is at the Western Area Power Administration facility in Loveland, Colorado.
First construction funds were provided by the Interior Department Appropriation Act of August 9, 1937 (50 Stat. 595). The President approved the Secretary`s finding of feasibility on December 21, 1937.
The Colorado-Big Thompson Project is one of the largest and most complex natural resource developments undertaken by Reclamation. It consists of over 100 structures integrated into a transmountain water diversion system through which multiple benefits are provided to the people.
Hydroelectric power is generated for the project. Water is taken from Flatiron Reservoir, passed through Big Thompson Power Plant, and returned to the Big Thompson River, as needed. The water and power control center for the Colorado-Big Thompson Project's reservoirs, power plants, and transmission lines in Wyoming, Colorado, and western Nebraska is at the Western Area Power Administration facility in Loveland, Colorado. Projects include a new plant fire alarm system, unit excitation system replacement, a new access bridge, and repairs to the Dille Diversion structure. Plant remote control (RTU SCADA and fiber communication) upgrades are planned to be completed in FY 2010. An upgrade to the governor is planned for FY 2013. Installation of online condition monitoring is planned for FY 2013. Turbine runner and wear ring replacement and a unit overhaul are scheduled to start in FY 2014. Plant is only used on a seasonal basis, primarily during spring runoff. Maintenance Costs show an increase in FY-2001 because of the Station Service Battery replacement, the Automation for Trifurcation Gates, and Conclusion of the ROM items.The plant operates under an effective head of 180 feet and has a generating capacity of 4,500 kilowatts.
Western Electricity Coordinating Council, Rocky Mountain Power Area
PMA Service Area
Western Area Power Administration, Rocky Mountain Region
Original Nameplate Capacity
Year of Initial Operation
4.8 percent (seasonal)
Colorado River and Big Thompson River
Title: Supervisor II Organization: Organization Phone: 970-724-3538
More Information about the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation