Home > Missions > Civil Works > Current Projects > Bluestone Hydropower

Project Information

CURRENT PROJECT STATUS:  The Corps is drafting an agreement per Water Resource Development Act (WRDA) 2000, Section 547, for the Tri-Cities Power Authority (TCPA) to design and construct the hydropower generating facilities at Bluestone Lake.  Early in negotiations it was realized that it was virtually impossible to complete an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), design and construct the hydropower facility within the four years allowed in WRDA 2000; therefore, two agreements will be negotiated (one to satisfy the National Environmental Policy Act requirements and one to accomplish the design and construction activities).  The NEPA agreement was signed and funding has been furnished to initiate the work with a letter of credit furnished to allow the Corps to complete our portion of the NEPA process.  As per WRDA 2000, upon completion of construction of the hydropower facility by TCPA, the Corps will operate and maintain the facility.  

Authorization: Water Resources Development Act of 2000, (P.L. 106-541), Section 547, as amended by the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2005 (P.L. 108-447), Division C, Title I, Section 122.

Project Sponsor: Tri-Cities Power Authority (TCPA)

Project Stakeholders: Tri-Cities Power Authority; Southeastern Power Authority (SEPA); Man-Cor

Project Location: Bluestone Lake lies in southern West Virginia, with the uppermost reach extending into Virginia. The dam is located on the New River at Hinton, Summers County, WV, and about 65 miles upstream from the confluence of the New River with the Gauley River at Gauley Bridge, WV.

Project Background: Bluestone Dam was originally designed for Federal hydropower and six penstocks were constructed through the east abutment. During world War II, construction activities were delayed, during which time interest in Federal hydropower declined. The penstocks were capped and have never been used to date. Thus, Bluestone Lake Dam has been an attractive site for development of hydropower. However, private development has been complicated and prohibitive because hydropower was an original Federal purpose of Bluestone Lake. TCPA, comprised of the West Virginia cities of Hinton, Philippi and White Sulphur Springs, obtained special legislation to remove hydropower as a Federal purpose, and provide TCPA with exclusive authority to persue development of a hydropower project.

Project Description: TCPA will design, construct, operate, and maintain a hydropower facility at the Bluestone Dam. The project will consist of the construction of a powerhouse and hydroelectric generating equipment and machinery near the east abutment of the dam. The TCPA project will connect turbines and generating equipment to three of the six existing penstocks. The maximum generating capacity of the proposed project will be 24 megawatts (mW).

Contact Info

(304) 399-5811