Already the recipient of a national award for the Spillway and Embankment improvement project, the facility this week hosted visitors from the Environmental Protection Agency and the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality. This was the first visit for EPA Asst. Administrator Radhika Fox, who said “It’s stunning, the way that Asheville is really focused on investing in making sure everyone has clean water.”
Led by Assistant Director of Water Resources Leslie Carreiro, as well as division manager Bill Hart, and Watershed Manager Lee Hensley, officials toured the facility’s main dam and principal spillway.
Carreiro told Fox and NCDEQ Secretary Elizabeth Biser the nationally recognized project really came down to reinforcing an older structure to meet the demands of the future. The investment in infrastructure and safety was applauded by the officials. “There has been a lot of forward thinking when it comes to looking at the infrastructure needs of this area,” Biser told attending media.
The North Fork rehabilitation project won Project of the Year from the Association of State Dam Safety Offices in 2021. “It’s really about Asheville looking ahead and forward to what they’re going to need as far as water supply to meet economic and residential growth here,” Fox said.
Photo: EPA Asst. Administrator Radhika Fox tours North Fork