Posted on January 11, 2023
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, is adding additional features to the Mississippi River Upper Pool 4 habitat restoration project near Red Wing, Minnesota. The project is being completed in partnership with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, the project sponsor, and the Lake Pepin Legacy Alliance.
Corps officials added two options to the contract with LS Marine, Inc., of Inver Grove Heights, Minnesota, Jan. 9, to use dredged material, or river sand, from the head of Lake Pepin to restore backwater river habitat near Bay City, Wisconsin. The new options add an additional island and berm to the project and increase the value to nearly $21 million.
The project will use river sand from the Mississippi River navigation channel and backwaters. Some of the key components of the project include building peninsulas, access dredging, and shoreline protection to improve fish and wildlife habitat.
Sedimentation has caused a loss of water depth diversity in the backwater lakes and isolated wetlands above Lake Pepin and has caused reduced habitat diversity and quality, lack of aquatic vegetation and invertebrates, and reduced abundance of fish and wildlife.
“The addition of the two project features will significantly increase the environmental benefits to the region,” said Maj. Nick Vottero, St. Paul District project manager. “We anticipate construction beginning later this year and look forward to working with our partners at the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the Lake Pepin Legacy Alliance to move this important project forward.”