lake water projects

Although Lake Nacimiento is located within San Luis Obispo County, the Monterey County Water Authority owns and operates the lake and its dam. However, San Luis Obispo County Water Authority has the rights to 17,500 acre-feet of water per year from Lake Nacimiento. To obtain this water, San Luis Obispo County is undertaking its single largest project ever—the Nacimiento Water Project (NWP). Through an approximately 45-mile long pipeline, the project will deliver water from Lake Nacimiento to the communities of Paso Robles, Templeton, Atascadero, San Luis Obispo, and County Service Area 10, Benefit Zone A (Cayucos). When finished the NWP will also include three storage tanks, two intermediate pump stations, and a multiport intake at the Lake. The estimated cost of the project, including design, construction, environmental permitting, and right-of-way, is $176 million.

The Monterey County Water Resources Agency began its construction no the Nacimiento Dam Spillway Modification Component  of the Salinas Valley Water Project on April 1, 2008. To address safety issues associated with the flood flows that must be conveyed through the reservoir and the spillway, Monterey County is enlarging the spillway and installing a rubber spillway gate at the dam. In addition to flood protection and dam safety, the project will provide additional water releases during the year for water conservation in the Salinas Valley. The project is expected to be completed by Fall 2009. Until then, construction will occur during the non-rainy seasons over the next two years.