E. V. Spence Reservoir (Colorado River Basin)

An aerial view to the E.V. Spencer Reservoir and Robert Lee Dam (Photo provided by the owner)E. V. Spence Reservoir (also known as Lake E. V. Spence and Robert Lee Dam) is located west of Robert Lee in Coke County, on the main stem of the Colorado River.  Robert Lee Dam was named since it is near the town of Robert Lee which was named after Robert Edward Lee (1807-1870), a civil war commander and pioneer to the area.  The reservoir is owned and operated by the Colorado River Municipal Water District (CRMWD) for the purpose of supplying water to the District and the City of San Angelo.  It was named after E. V. Spence, first General Manager of the CRMWD, who fought so hard for its permit and died suddenly only months before it was granted.  The Permit (No. 2179) was issued on September 1, 1965.  Construction of the dam started December 16, 1966 and was completed on November 21, 1969.  Deliberate impoundment of water began December 15, 1968.  The dam is an earthfill embankment of 21,500 feet long with a maximum height of 140 feet and top at elevation of 1,928 feet above mean sea level.  The 3,200 feet long emergency spillway is cut through natural ground without control with its crest at elevation of 1,908 feet above mean sea level. The service spillway consists of a concrete drop inlet "morning glory" type structure with its crest at elevation of 1,878 feet above mean sea level.  Control for the service spillway consists of twelve lift gates that rest on the spillway crest, with the top of gate at elevation of 1,900 feet above mean sea level.  According to TWDB 1999 survey, the reservoir has a conservation storage capacity of is 512,272 acre-feet encompassing an area of approximately 14,640 acres at the conservation pool elevation of 1,898 feet above mean sea level.  The drainage area above the dam is about 2,695 square miles, excluding the areas controlled by Lake J. B. Thomas, Lake Colorado City and Champion Creek Reservoir.

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