Posted on September 26, 2022
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District; the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources; and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Midwest Region will celebrate the completion of an environmental restoration project for the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge with a ribbon cutting ceremony Tuesday, Oct. 11, at 10:30 a.m. in Shakopee, Minnesota.
The ceremony is open to the public and will also be broadcast on Facebook Live on the St. Paul District’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/usace.saintpaul. The event will include brief remarks from officials of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Upper Mississippi River Basin Association followed by a ribbon cutting ceremony.
The $4.9 million Bass Ponds Habitat Rehabilitation and Enhancement project built five new water level management structures so that refuge staff can lower, raise or maintain water levels to restore plant and bird habitat. Prior to the 1850s, this area was primarily wetlands and native prairie; however, land-use changes, trending toward agricultural usage, as well as climate change resulting in more frequent flood events, have significantly altered the hydrology of the area.
This milestone project, marking the third Upper Mississippi River Restoration, or UMRR, project completed in a single year for the St. Paul District, is made possible through UMRR funding. The program ensures the coordinated development and enhancement of the Upper Mississippi River system with a primary emphasis on habitat restoration projects and resource monitoring.
In the 36-year history of the program, more than 55 habitat projects benefiting approximately 100,000 acres on the Upper Mississippi River, from Minneapolis to St. Louis, have been completed.