WHITNEY POINT, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers paid a visit to a local reservoir to check in on a long standing project.
The Whitney Point Lake is celebrating 80 years since its construction along the Otselic River in 1942.
The dam is one of 13 reservoir projects in the Susquehanna River watershed managed by the Baltimore District and designed to mitigate flooding in the region.
The staff at the dam said that a majority of the equipment used to maintain the water levels are the original structures from 80 years ago.
Baltimore District Commander, Colonel Estee Pinchasin said that whenever she gets to come up to the Whitney Point area, she feels a sense of family that she does not sense anywhere else.
Pinchasin said, “Besides just being a recreation area, it also brings a vehicle to teach children about science and plant those seeds of the future engineers of our country. That are going to learn about what there is at this park. It’s not just a place where they’re going to go run, like my son is doing right now, but that they’re going to learn about the impact that this has.”
One staff member said that in 2006, the dam recorded the highest water levels in history.
The dam is an earth-fill structure that is 4,900 feet long and raised 95 feet above the stream bed.
Pinchasin said that each year, the county-run Dorchester Park welcomes over 150,000 people.
She said that the Whitney Point dam is unique, in that, people can walk across it and the community is so heavily involved.
The cost of building the dam was over $5.4 million, and the estimated damages prevented through 2021 are estimated at over $800 million.