USACE CWMS - Iowa River Watershed

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Created: Jun 28, 2018 at 1:53 p.m.
Last updated: Jun 28, 2018 at 2:10 p.m.
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The Corps Water Management System (CWMS) includes four interrelated models to assist with water management for the basin:

- GeoHMS (Geospatial Hydrologic Modeling Extension)
- ResSIM (Reservoir System Simulation)
- RAS (River Analysis System)
- FIA (Flood Impact Analysis)

The Iowa River basin is the second largest basin in the state of Iowa, covering approximately 12,640 square miles. The headwaters originate at in Hancock County, IA. Spanning almost the entire state from North to South, the basin generally flows in a southeasterly direction and drains to the Mississippi River, with the outlet located just upstream of the city of New Boston, Illinois. The basin is roughly 360 miles long and has an average width of 55 miles. The Iowa River has a mildly sinuous channel with low banks and a small slope. During times of heavy rains, the valleys in the basin can be subjected to serious flooding as was seen in the 2008 flood of record. The primary land use in the basin is agriculture. The largest urbanized areas in the watershed (population over 10,000), include Iowa City, Coralville, Cedar Rapids, Waterloo, Cedar Falls, Mason City, and Marshalltown. There are also several other small towns located along the banks of the Iowa River and spread throughout the basin.

There is one reservoir constructed and operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers in the watershed: Coralville Lake. The dam is located on the main stem of the Iowa River and is operated by the Rock Island District. The primary purpose of the reservoir is to provide flood damage reduction and low flow augmentation for the lower Iowa River. The secondary benefits of the reservoir include enhancing recreational opportunities, providing fish and wildlife conservation, and improving land use management. There are no Locks located along the Iowa River as there is not sufficient width or depth for a navigation channel.

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Coordinate System/Geographic Projection:
WGS84 EPSG:4326
Coordinate Units:
['Decimal degrees']
North Latitude
East Longitude
South Latitude
West Longitude

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How to Cite

Myers, J. (2018). USACE CWMS - Iowa River Watershed, HydroShare,

This resource is shared under the Creative Commons Attribution CC BY.


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