Powerhouses and dams were built between 1904 and 1918 during the construction of the Barge Canal system in New York State. The Barge Canal system is 527 miles long and has fifty-seven locks made of concrete. The locks are 328 feet long from gate to gate and forty-five feet wide. The powerhouse is located next to a dam and generates the power to operate the locks. The purpose of the forty dams along the canalized rivers is to control the water level. In the winter, the dams allow the water to return to its normal level to prevent flooding. During the shipping season, the purpose of the dams is to maintain a level pool of water for navigation along the canal system.
How does technology impact the geography and economy of a society?
Check for Understanding
Describe the scene in the photograph and evaluate the impact of the canals on the geography and economy of local communities.