Page 123


Page 123
Colorado River problem
Is Part Of,8
Full text
428 KELLY ON THE COLORADO RIVER PROBLEM the bridge and the extra operating costs due to the additional three miles of road are capitalized at about $1,00,000. No allowance is made for salvage on the present division shops, ice plants, and other property. On the other hand, the estimate of flowage damages at the Boulder site, the development of which would cause the flooding of many mining claims, two small towns, and a branch line railroad terminus, is only $500,000. Evidently these two estimates are not made on the same basis and are not comparable. With respect to irrigable land in Mohave Valley, it should be understood that the river meanders through this Valley in such a way that under present conditions the cost of reclaiming the land by holding the river in place is too great to make the land of any value. What the conditions will be when the river is controlled to a maximum flow of 40,000 cu. ft. per sec., as proposed by the Reclamation Service, is problematical. It should be less expensive to reclaim the land under those conditions, but levees and bank protection will still be necessary, and will cost at least $50,000 per mile. The land is divided by the river into five tracts, as shown in Table 35. To the cost of reclamation must be added the cost of irrigation and drainage, which will probably be not less than $75 per acre. To the usual operating costs must be added a figure for maintenance of levees and bank protection. Considering these facts, none of this land is economically feasible for irrigation, with the possible exception of the tract at the south end of the Valley. A dam at Parker of the height proposed by Mr. Davis would submerge this tract; a dam at Parker that does not submerge this tract will not materially interfere with a dam at Mohave. TABLE 35.—Irrigable Lands, Cottonwood and Mohave Valleys. (Acreages from Unpublished Report of U. S. Reclamation Service, 1916. Other Figures Compiled by the Writer.) Area in Acres. - Miles of revetment and levee. Estimated cost per acre of levee and revetment. Tract. Irrigable. Waste. Total. Remarks. Gravity. Pump. Gravity. Pump. Gravity. Pump. Cottonwood Valley: East side......... West side......... Mohave valley : Arizona side...... 2,085 2,214 700 70 2,425 1,551 703 2,200 4,800 12,500 400 230 1,200 3,636 2,917 2,200 5,800 35,000 1,000 300 3,625 5 7 10 28 $125.00 160.00 500.00 56.00 All gravity land has been ruined by meandering of river. Opposite from Mohave 1,000 22,500 Arizona side........ Mr. Davis states that engineers who examined the Mohave site twenty years ago rejected it. It may be well to record why this site was then rejected.

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