Grand Valley Drainage District celebrates 100 years serving irrigation water to residents and farmers | PostIndependent.com

Grand Valley Drainage District celebrates 100 years serving irrigation water to residents and farmers

Brittany Markert
bmarkert@gjfreepress.com
Grand Valley Drainage District will celebrate its 100th birthday this year.
Submitted photo |

Irrigation is key in our dry western environment. Without the Grand Valley Drainage District (GVDD), hundreds of acres of farms and thousands of homes wouldn’t have a billion gallons of water each day.

For the past 100 years, GVDD has provided more than 200 miles of pipes and ditches to residents in Colorado’s Grand Valley.

In 1915, GVDD was organized by a Colorado Statute to alleviate tail water, seepage and eventually flooding problems in the Grand Valley.

According to GVDD manager, Tim Ryan, the district outlines areas from north of the Colorado River, and south of Grand Valley Irrigation Company canal, from Palisade to Loma, which totals about 90 square miles.

In 1923, a $4 million property tax mill levy was approved by the voters to make sure there would be revenue and right of ways. This was to ensure irrigation and seep would always get back into the river so the ground in Colorado’s Grand Valley would be productive.

“The primary agriculture system has been urbanized over time,” Ryan said.

He added there are over $80 million coming to the area because of agriculture revenue and the districts ability to return the water to the river. With the returned water, the plants are able to produce crop and continue creating revenue.

“We want to continue to adapt the system to continue its use for development,” Ryan said. “We hope to continue to upgrade the current systems which are used by development and upsizing where local authorities anticipate development.”

GVDD will host an open house at 722 23 Road in Grand Junction on Oct. 3, from 2-4 p.m. with an ice cream social.

For more information, visit http://www.thedrainagedistrict.org.


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