Archived Story

Ball gets rolling on dredging data

Published 10:19am Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Shell Rock River Watershed District Board of Managers on Tuesday approved its first engineering contract for the Fountain Lake dredging project.

Barr Engineering Co., of Minneapolis, will gather data for an engineering report over the next 10 months that identifies the objectives for the lake restoration and that will aid with the project’s permitting and environmental review requirements.

According to the engineering proposal submitted to the managers, the company proposed to be paid $365,000 and stated it would compile existing data for preliminary engineering, complete cross-section drawings that will show the extent of proposed sediment removal, evaluate the restoration options and benefits, and create maps to show potential pipeline routes. It would also collect and analyze core samples, among other duties.

It is the first in a series of preliminary steps that needs to be completed prior to the dredging.

The action follows the district’s purchase this fall of a 2010 IMS 7012 HP 51-foot Versi hydraulic dredge for about $340,000, along with the pipes, pumping and other equipment necessary to pump the dredge material away from the lake site for $435,000.

District Administrator Brett Behnke said after this phase of engineering, there will be a more detailed design, environmental review and permitting phase.

The entire project is estimated to cost $15 million, half of which Watershed District officials are lobbying in state funding.

According to a news release, District 27 Sen. Dan Sparks, DFL-Austin, has introduced a bill in the Senate for the funding, and District 27A Rep. Shannon Savick, DFL-Wells, has introduced one in the House. The bills are each co-authored by four or five other legislators.

“The support of our legislators and these co-authors positions us well in the very competitive capital bonding arena,” Behnke said.

Clayton Petersen, board chairman, said he was pleased with the progress taken Tuesday and said he continues to look to the community for input and support as the project moves forward.