Authorization: Authorized as a part of the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System in the River and Harbor Act approved July 24, 1946; Project Document HD 758, 79th Congress, 2d Session.
Location: On the Arkansas River at navigation mile 366.6, about 5 miles northwest of Webbers Falls in Muskogee County, Oklahoma.
Purpose: Navigation, recreation, fish and wildlife, and hydroelectric power.
History of Construction: Construction began in January 1965. Closure was completed in November 1970, and the project was placed in useful operation. The lock and dam became operational for navigation in December 1970. Power units 1, 2, and 3 were placed into operation in August, September, and November 1973, respectively. A Turbine Rehabilitation occurred from 2008 to 2018. A Generator Rehabilitation occurred from 2011 to 2020 resulting in uprate from 20,000 kW per unit to 25,000 kW per unit.
Type of Structure: The dam is constructed of rolled-earth material. The total crest length of the structures, including the spillway, powerhouse intake, and the navigation lock, is 4,370 feet. The maximum height is 87 feet above the streambed. A service road is provided across the top of the dam.
Spillway & Outlet Works: The spillway extends across the left half of the existing river channel with the powerhouse structure in the right half of the river channel. The spillway is a gated, concrete, ogee weir. The crest of the weir is 66.8 and 40.0 feet below the tops of the maximum and power pools, respectively. The weir is surmounted by twelve 50- by 41-foot-high tainter gates. The gates are separated by eleven 10-foot intermediate piers which also support a 5-foot-wide service roadway bridge. Spillway capacity at maximum pool (elevation 516.8) is 1,200,000 cubic feet per second (cfs). Webbers Falls’ hydropower capacity (when all 3 units are available at full capacity) is between 24,000-27,000 cfs.
Lock: The lock is a 30-foot normal lift, Ohio River-type, with a culvert and port filling system and side outlet discharge. The lock is located in the left overbank with excavated approach channels. The chamber is 110 feet wide by 600 feet long.
Powerhouse: The powerhouse is an integral-type structure with three inclined-axis type units having a total capacity of 75,00 kW.
Hydrologic Data: The flood of record occurred in May 1943 (pre-construction) with an estimated peak discharge at the dam site of 720,000 cfs.