tva logoTennessee Valley Authority

TVA To Lower Boone Reservoir for Maintenance Work

November 7, 2013

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. ― The Tennessee Valley Authority will lower Boone Reservoir, located near Johnson City, Tenn., nearly 14 feet below its normal winter drawdown level to perform maintenance on the dam’s intake and spillway gates.

“Property and marina owners with docks and boats that won’t float at a lower level should take necessary precautions for the drawdown,” said John McCormick, vice president for TVA River Operations.

Starting in mid-December the reservoir will be pulled down to about 1,348 feet above sea level, which is nearly 14 feet below its normal winter pool. In January, TVA engineers and construction crews will begin replacing large chains that lift Boone Dam’s six intake gates used to shut off water to the generating turbines. Crews will also replace steel cables used to lift the five large spillway gates, which can release excess water during flood events.

“With the lake being lowered beyond its normal levels in mid-December, owners have a good month or so to make arrangements,” McCormick said.

The work is expected to be finished by mid-February. When complete, the lake will be allowed to rise to its normal winter elevation. With normal rainfall and runoff in the spring, Boone Lake should refill on schedule for next summer’s recreation season.

“Our dam safety and maintenance team is doing this work in the winter when the water elevation is already low,” McCormick said, “so we don’t impact the important summer recreation season.”

Boone property owners, dock owners and marina owners are encouraged to take advantage of these low-water conditions to complete shoreline cleanup or permitted stabilization efforts, or general dock maintenance on previously permitted structures. Any new shoreline work or dock alterations will require prior approval from TVA.

TVA reminds the public during this drawdown period that it is illegal to remove, disturb, dig or damage archaeological artifacts on federal property, including land normally covered by water.

“The Archaeological Resources Protection Act or ARPA makes it a crime to disturb or remove archaeological resources including Native American Indian and Civil War relics on federal land, including TVA-managed property, without a research permit,” said David Jolley, director of TVA Security and Emergency Management, which has dedicated ARPA investigators.

“TVA takes its responsibility to protect cultural resources seriously. Metal detectors are banned from public shorelines and lands. We’re asking the public to report anyone digging for artifacts to call 1-855-476-2489.”

TVA’s website will provide up to date information about the Boone Dam project and current lake level information at Additional Information on the river system and specific reservoirs is available on TVA’s website at and on TVA’s free app for the iPad, iPhone and Android devices.  Links to download the apps are available at  For photos of various TVA dams, visit TVA’s Flickr site at

The Tennessee Valley Authority is a corporate agency of the United States that provides electricity for business customers and local power distributors serving 9 million people in parts of seven southeastern states. TVA receives no taxpayer funding, deriving virtually all of its revenues from sales of electricity. In addition to operating and investing its revenues in its electric system, TVA provides flood control, navigation and land management for the Tennessee River system and assists local power companies and state and local governments with economic development and job creation.

Media Contact

Travis Brickey, Knoxville, 865-632-6263
TVA Public Relations, Knoxville, (865) 632-6000
Follow TVA news on Facebook and Twitter


Content for id "future1" Goes Here
Content for id "future2" Goes Here
Content for id "future3" Goes Here