In our Feb. 9 issue, we reported about an upcoming drawdown of the Mississippi River. Now word comes from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that it’s not happening. There will be no public tours. Here’s the official word:
ST. PAUL, Minn. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, will not at this time proceed with a request to temporarily lower the elevations of the Mississippi River in the intermediate pool between Upper and Lower St. Anthony Falls locks and dams.
The drawdown was requested by the Bassett Creek Watershed Commission and originally proposed to take place from Feb. 25 to March 1. Its purpose was to facilitate a tunnel inspection as part of the Bassett Creek Flood Risk Management Project. Further review of the request found that a drawdown could not be supported at this time, as it would not meet the latest requirements of Corps policy.
The St. Paul District recently solicited public comments on the proposed drawdown request from members of the local community and stakeholders. Public feedback received during this period assisted the agency in determining its response.
“We recognize the importance of the commission’s request, and will do our part to help find a path forward so a tunnel inspection can be completed,” said Col. Sam Calkins, district commander.