The City of Tempe has been working to replace the dam system at Town Lake for more than four years.
When staff discovered that the inflatible dam system was wearing faster than manufacturers said it would, the city began negociating with Bridgestone representatives. The end result was that Bridgestone agreed to replace the west end bladders at no cost to the city, but that Tempe would find a new dam technology and put it in place by December 31, 2015.
A construction crew had started the process of replacing the inflatible bladders with new ones by preparing the site for their work the next day. Just hours before construction crews were to begin the project in earnest, one of the inflatible bladders burst. Because of good planning, the replacement bladder was already on site and crews were able to return Town Lake to its normal state in just about 90 days.
On Jan. 5, 2012, the Tempe City Council heard information about several dam technologies. The consultants at Gannett Fleming and city staff recommended the steel gate dam, which council chose at a later council meeting. You can view the PowerPoint they saw.
Staff is now in the process of engineering the steel gate dam with representatives of Gannett Fleming. The project is targeted scheduled to meet the December 2015 timeframe.
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