San Diego County Water Authority dedicated its new higher dam at the San Vicente Reservoir Thursday morning.
The three-year, $416 million construction project to raise the San Vicente Dam by 117 feet was essentially completed in June, water authority spokesman Mike Lee said. The dam is now 337 feet high.
The water authority also constructed a surge tank, a pump station and 11 miles of large-diameter pipeline, which together cost another $400 million or so, according to Lee.
The extra water in the reservoir will be able to supply 300,000 homes annually. It will also give the county extra water in case of emergency.
Ramona Municipal Water District is among the water authority's member agencies.
The water authority expects it to take between two and five years to refill the reservoir to its new level, depending on rainfall, the availability of imported water and local demand. The body of water will remain closed to recreational use until it reaches the level of a new boat ramp.