Idaho Water Resources Research Institute (IWRRI)
322 E. Front Street, Suite 242
Boise, ID 83702
Phone: 208-332-4422
Fax: 208-332-4400
Contact: John Tracy

Contact Research

Office of Research

Office of Research & Economic Development
phone: 208-885-6689

Physical Location
Morrill Hall 105

Mailing Address
875 Perimeter Drive MS 3010
University of Idaho
Moscow, ID 83844-3010
Hydro Conditions

Boise Front Geothermal Aquifer

An extensive low-temperature geothermal aquifer system underlies the Boise area along the Boise Foothills. Proposed increases in thermal water withdrawals (with associated re-injection) led to concerns about the potential impacts to the aquifer system.

This study consisted of developing refining the hydrogeologic framework of the Boise Front Geothermal Aquifer, describing hydrologic conditions, and constructing a numerical model to simulate potential effects of increases in production and re-injection. The primary area of interest for this study includes the Harris Ranch, Downtown Boise Table Rock, and Stewart Gulch areas.

The purpose of this study is to provide tools for the long-term management of the Boise geothermal aquifer system. Specific objectives include the following:
  • Use data collected since 1994 to review and refine the conceptual understanding of the Boise geothermal aquifer.
  • Construct a numerical model capable of simulating hydraulic heads and water temperatures.
  • Calibrate the model on the basis of hydraulic head and temperature observations using methods that quantify calibration confidence.
  • Evaluate increased production capacity of the geothermal system on the basis of projected geothermal re-injection effects.
  • Evaluate potential effects of increased production on Boise geothermal heating districts.

Reports & Publications

Executive Summary: Investigation of Hydrogeologic Conditions and Ground Water Flow in the Boise Front Geothermal Aquifer  (300 Kb)

Hydrogeologic Conditions in the Boise Front Geothermal Aquifer (4.8 Mb)

Hydrologic Conditions in the Boise Front Geothermal Aquifer - Appendix H: Measurement Point Locations  (2.1 Mb)

Simulation of Ground Water Flow in the Boise Front Geothermal Aquifer  (4.6 Mb)