In March of 1906 construction began on a dam that would be used to divert water into the newly completed New York Canal from the Boise River. Over the next two years the construction project faced many challenges ranging from a lack of proper supervision to inclement weather and flooding. The dam was completed in the summer of 1908 and water was released into the New York Canal to be used throughout the Treasure Valley. In 1912, the power plant, along with a 17 mile long transmission line, was constructed to supply electrical power to meet the construction needs to build Arrowrock Dam.
The Boise River Diversion Dam is a rubble concrete weir type structure with a water depth of 39 feet. It is 500 feet in length and is 68 feet high at the top of the power house. The reservoir created by the dam holds 1,200 acre feet of water. The original power house held three vertical Francis Turbine Generators with wooden turbine bearings. These generators were capable of producing 500 KW each. From 2002 to 2004, the power plant received a rebuild and the capacity was increased from 1,500 KW to 3,300 KW. During this rebuild an effort was made to preserve as much of the history of the power plant as possible. The power plant was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1976.
The Boise River Diversion Dam and Power Plant is owned and operated by the United States Bureau of Reclamation.
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Information from Tour of Dam 10/2011