In late 2004, Central purchased 482 acres just west of the town of Orchard, Colorado. In cooperation with Orphan Wells of Wiggins (OWW), Central began construction on the Orchard Recharge Project. The project is owned by both WAS and GMS. The location of Orchard Recharge Project is ideal considering the river front access for well installation and the existing natural depressions for infiltration ponds.
The accretions that come back to the South Platte River run for quite sometime and therefore become a supply in a short term drought. Whenever Central has excess flows in this region of the river, we can divert water back to recharge at this facility. Being located near the end of Central’s district, the project serves very well as an “equalizer”.
Delivery from the wells to the ponds is achieved with 36” diameter plastic pipe that can deliver over 35 cubic feet per second (cfs) or up to around 17,000 gallons per minute (gpm). Upon reaching the eastern pond, the 36” diameter pipeline enters a wye where butterfly valves control the destination of the water to all of the ponds. From the wye to each of the three ponds, 24” diameter plastic pipe was used.