Gallipolis Locks and Dam (Ohio)
Gallipolis, Ohio 45631
Gallipolis Locks and Dam webpage
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About Gallipolis Locks and Dam (Ohio)
Now named the Robert C. Byrd Locks and Dam, the Gallipolis Locks and Dam was built on the Ohio River near Gallipolis Ferry, West Virginia, as part of a series of locks and dams to allow navigation year-round. It began operation on August 25, 1937, and final construction was completed in October 1937.
Fifty years later, construction began on a project to build bigger lock chambers, capable of locking through modern-sized tows and barges. Work began in November 1987 and was completed January 1993. The project consists of a main lock chamber 110-feet wide by 1,200-feet long with an auxiliary lock chamber 110-feet wide by 600-feet long. In January 1993, the lock and dam was renamed after West Virginia Senator Robert C. Byrd.
Construction to rehabilitate the 1,116-foot long dam began in August 1992 and was completed in 2002. Eight new roller gates were built, and control units, a motor control center and electric feeders were replaced.
In June 2007 the fishing access pier was opened to the public. The pier meets federally required accessibility standards. The fishing pier is closed during winter months to prevent vehicles from entering high water at pier level. It is scheduled to reopen to the public each May, providing the water level is below pier level.
The future will bring changes to the Ohio abutment side in the form of a new hydroelectric facility and a recreation area.
A public recreation area is located on the West Virginia side of the river. It includes a park with a picnic area, playground, and parking. The park is open year-round. Each year the fishing recreation area opens, depending on weather conditions or on Memorial Day (whichever comes first). The closing time at end of year is dictated by the weather. The park is closed at dusk and opens at 6:00 a.m. each day.
From Gallipolis Locks and Dam webpage