The following report on the Temporary Barriers Project is for your information and action, as appropriate.  This report will be transmitted whenever changes occur to the operation of the barriers, and as a result of modeling and/or field monitoring of water levels in the south Delta.

STATUS AS OF:   November 5, 2009

Head of Old River (HOR) Barrier:

No fall HOR barrier will be installed this year.

Agricultural Barriers (Old River near Tracy [ORT], Middle River [MR], Grant Line Canal [GLC]):

The removal of south Delta temporary rock barriers continued this week, with the Old River near Tracy barrier being breached on Wednesday, November 4th.   The removal of the Grant Line Canal barrier rock weir started last week after water hyacinth accumulation prevented operation of the boat portage facilities.  The center section and half of the boat ramp has been removed.  The TBP contractor is currently waiting for approval to dive to remove underwater mats and docks at the Old River and Grant Line Canal barriers.  Removal of the Middle River barrier will start as early as next week.  All in-water work will be completed by the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. 

No modeling was done this week, as the barriers are being removed.


The GLC barrier culverts are in need of repair and are not operating to their fullest potential (some leakage and poorly sealing flap gates).  DWR is planning on removing the culverts in 2010 and replacing them with new culverts before the 2011 season begins.

DWR has applied for permits this summer to allow raising the weir height at the MR barrier an additional one foot.  This would not change the barrier footprint, but would potentially provide improved circulation and water quality upstream in Middle River and downstream in Old River.  It appears unlikely that this change will be permitted in time for the current irrigation season due to the need to prepare additional documentation required by Federal regulatory agencies before review and permitted can be completed.

Due to “Furlough Friday’s” on three of four Fridays each month, the TBP weekly update will go out on Mondays until further notice.

These weekly updates are also available for your information on our website:

If you know of anyone else that should be receiving this update, please let me know by email, and I'll add them to the mailing list.  Thanks!

Mark A. Holderman, P.E.
Chief, Temporary Barriers Project and Lower San Joaquin
Bay-Delta Office
California Department of Water Resources
1416 9th St., P.O. Box 942836
Sacramento, CA 94236-0001
Phone: (916) 653-7429  FAX: (916) 653-6077
Cell: (916) 601-6036 E-Mail: