The Old Badger Plant was constructed in 1907 – 1908. The New Badger Plant was completed in 1928.
The City of Kaukauna acquired substantially all of the assets of the Green Bay and Mississippi Canal Company in 1974. The Badger Hydro Project includes the following features:
- 2,100 foot long power canal with headworks
- Old Badger Powerhouse
- New Badger Powerhouse
The Badger Power Canal and Old and New Badger Powerhouses are all located within the city limits of Kaukauna. The power canal is 2,100 feet long and about 100 feet wide. The upstream end of the canal includes a headgate structure equipped with tainter gates available to shut off flow from the Fox River.
The headworks are 137 feet long and include six tainter gates each 20 feet wide by 15 feet high. The gates rest on a concrete sill at the same elevation as the bedrock. Concrete piers separate the gates and carry a single traveling electric hoist that is manually moved to serve all six gates.
The bottom of the power canal is a rock cut and the sides are rock lined. On the left side of the power canal, upstream of the New Badger Plant, is a concrete gravity retaining wall. The Old Powerhouse contains two 1,000 kW generators each connected to a turbine that operates at 22 feet of head.
There is a turbine flume structure that is a separate structure from the powerhouse. The turbine flume is approximately 78 feet wide by 52 feet deep and is constructed of concrete and stone masonry founded on bedrock. The turbine flume contains four tailrace draft tube water passages separated by concrete walls, all the same size.
The draft tubes were replaced in 1990. The bottom of the tailrace pit is bedrock. The turbine flume contains two horizontal shaft Francis turbines each equipped with four runners on each shaft. The Old Badger Powerhouse is located next to the turbine flume on the right bank of the power canal. It is 36 feet wide by 115 feet deep with a concrete floor resting on concrete and stone masonry walls.
The powerhouse contains two generator units. The controls for these units are located in the New Badger Powerhouse. The New Badger Powerhouse contains two 1,800 kW generators each connected to a turbine that operates at 24 feet of head. The concrete structure at the New Badger Powerhouse is approximately 36 feet deep by 80 feet wide. The structure consists of an integral intake, turbine pit, draft tubes and tailrace. It is constructed at two levels on a bedrock foundation.
On the left (looking downstream) side of the powerhouse a trash sluice is available to carry trash around the intake area, around the powerhouse and into the tailrace area.
Water levels for both the powerhouses are maintained by the adjacent Corps of Engineers’ dam on the Fox River.