The hydroelectric project will be located at Lock and Dam No. 3 on the J. Bennett Johnson Waterway. Lock and Dam No. 3 is located near the City of Colfax, 38 miles upstream of Alexandria, Louisiana at approximately river mile 116.5. Lock and Dam No.3 is one of five navigation lock and dam structures that comprise the J. Bennett Johnson Waterway on the Red River.
The navigation project was authorized by the 90th Congress, in the Rivers Harbors Act of 1968 which authorized construction of the Red River Waterway by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The overall project stabilized the river banks and restored navigation to the Red River from the Mississippi and Atchafalaya Rivers to an upstream location at Shreveport and Bossier City (River Mile 234.5). The navigation project serves the major cities of Alexandria and Shreveport, Louisiana. Lock and Dam No.3 was designed and constructed under the direction of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg District. The navigation project was completed in December 1994.
The navigation project features include a 9 foot deep x 200 foot wide navigation channel beginning at the Mississippi River some 75 miles above Baton Rouge, Louisiana and winding northwest past Alexandria and Shreveport to a turning basin at Lake O’ The Pines near Dangerfield, Texas. The navigation project also provided for bank stabilization work and channel re-alignments which serve to reduce the navigation distance between the Mississippi River and Shreveport by some 20 percent. The Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg District, operates the J. Bennett Johnson Waterway. The Red River Waterway Commission serves as the local sponsor for the project and administers recreational opportunities throughout the project.
The principal structures associated with Lock and Dam No. 3 are a navigation lock, a gated spillway, concrete abutment walls and an overflow weir. The project will be developed with Natel’s Restoration Hydro Turbine (RHT), a propeller turbine designed for the low-head (i.e. 2 to 20 meters / 6 to 65 feet) applications.