Water is essential to life, making its total health and economic value immeasurable. Based on current and future population projections for both Walton and Oconee County, existing water supply resources will be depleted over time due to anticipated growth. The Hard Labor Creek Regional Reservoir Project will provide an additional 52 million gallons per day of reliable and sustainable water supply for Walton and Oconee County, and ensure our future quality of life the continued economic viability of our communities.
The proposed dam will be approximately 1,900 feet long, 600 feet wide and the base, and 98 feet high. The reservoir pool will cover approximately 1,370 acres, with 42 miles of shoreline. At full capacity, the reservoir will hold 12 billion gallons of water, and will yield 52 million gallons of additional water supply capacity.
The current and future customers of the Walton County Water and Sewerage Authority, Oconee County Utility Department, and other regional wholesale customers including the City of Loganville, City of Social Circle and the City of Jersey.
Construction of the Hard Labor Creek Regional Reservoir is projected to cost $85 Million; including land acquisition (2,205 acres), clearing and grubbing, construction of the reservoir dam, water intake structure, required road relocations, and wetland/stream mitigation. Currently, all phases of the project are trending under budget. The Water Treatment Facility and Apalachee River Diversion will be included under future phases of the project.
Because waterways don’t follow government-drawn boundaries, the water resources of a given region must serve all communities within that region. Through regional water supply partnerships, communities can reduce the overall cost of water source development, while having less impact on the environment.
Initial projections are 2 to 3 years based on average historic rainfall data.
The Reservoir Management Board has appointed a Recreation Committee to evaluate recreational alternatives, development costs, and operational considerations. The Recreation Committee is scheduled to issue final recommendations in August 2014. Possible recreational opportunities may include fishing and boating (electric motors only), picnic and passive recreational areas, and walking trails.
Since the Reservoir’s primary purpose is drinking water supply, some activities will be prohibited in order to protect water quality. Per State Regulations, swimming will not be allowed.