DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Washington, D.C. 20131-1000
30 July 2004
EXPIRES 30 July 2009
Engineering and Design
NAVIGATION LOCK GUARD WALLS
The purpose of this Engineer Technical Letter (ETL) is to provide design guidance
for upper lock approaches, including parameters for the geometric layout of upper
approach guard walls.
This ETL is applicable to all USACE Commands having Civil Works responsibilities.
It applies to all studies and designs of upper lock approaches.
3. Distribution Statement.
Approved for unlimited public release.
a. ERDC/CHL, EM 1110-2-1611, Dec 1980, Layout and Design of Shallow-
b. ERDC/CHL, CHETN-IX-6, Dec 2001, Modeling Navigation Conditions at
Lock Approaches, Richard L. Stockstill.
c. ERDC/CHL, CHETN-IX-8, June 2002, General Guard Wall Design
Considerations for Tow Entry and Exit, Howard Park.
Upper lock approach guard walls are structural members used by downbound
towboats to align with and enter the lock chamber. The performance of these guard
walls drastically impacts the functional efficiency of any given lock. Guard wall
efficiency can be measured in units of time. An efficient guard wall results in
minimal maneuvering for a downbound tow to come to rest or near rest on the guard
This engineer technical letter supersedes information found in Chapter 10 of this reference.