Olmsted County approves location to place sediment from Lake Zum - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Olmsted County approves location to place sediment from Lake Zumbro

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NEAR MAZEPPA, Minn. (KTTC) -

Olmsted County has approved a site to put sediment dredged from Lake Zumbro. 

Sediment had been building up for decades in the lake, and dredging would get rid of it. All of it is going to a piece of land that is 80 acres and 1.5 miles away from the Zumbro.

According to Project Manager John Helmers, the site is close enough to the project, and it's suitable so that after the dredging is done the land can still be farmed.
"The sediments are usually coming from farm runoff but also roads and streets and things like that. And they can have various materials in them that would be harmful," said Helmers. "We have tested these materials that we're going to be removing and it is classified as the lowest level  of dredge spoil so it can be farmed afterward."

The dam was built nearly 100 years ago, when the ravine was flooded.

"Over that time, sediment has moved into the lake and has reduced the area that is usable for boating and fishing," said Helmers. "We really only have this one lake that's navigable with motorboats in Southeastern Minnesota. And it gets heavily used at some points in the summer; 16-hundred people are using it on the weekend."

Lake Zumbro is one of the only boating lakes in the region, making it an important recreational spot for residents.

The project of dredging and restoring Lake Zumbro costs $7 million. Helmers said the dredging would happen either in the Spring or Summer of 2019, and that would a 3 or 4 month long process.

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