Water Resources Program  |  Dam Safety

Dam Safety Program

The County operates six dams regulated by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) – Dam Safety Division. We are responsible for properly operating and maintaining the dams. The dams are:

• Mint Springs - Upper (swimming lake)

• Mint Springs - Middle (fishing lake)

• Walnut Creek Park

• Chris Greene Park

• Hillcrest (adjacent to Monticello High School and Lakeside Apartments)

Lake Hollymead

County responsibilities include routine maintenance (mowing, vegetation control) and maintaining compliance with DCRDam at Chris Greene Lake in northern Albemarle County permit requirements by performing annual inspections and developing and maintaining an Operations and Maintenance Plan and an Emergency Action Plan for each dam. We are currently finalizing the fulfillment of relatively new requirements to assess the effects of dam breaches, map the resulting inundation zones, and determine the hazard potential classifications of the dams.

The findings for the Lake Hollymead Dam (completed in 2013) identified the need to reinforce the downstream slope of the dam to avoid scouring and a potential failure during a design storm known as the probable maximum precipitation (PMP) event. County staff have worked with an engineering consultant to design improvements to address the deficiencies of the dam. More information about the Hollymead Dam Reinforcement Project can be found at this link.

The County's Community Development Department is also responsible for ensuring that land development and other activities do not result in increased flood hazards. This is done, in part, through receiving and posting maps of inundation zones resulting from the theoretical breaching - or failure - of dams (public and private) located within the County during extreme rainfall events. This information can be found on the County GIS-Web; under the Legend tab, click "Overlays" and then "Dam Break Inundation Zones".