Section 3065 Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) 2007.Section 206, WRDA 1996, as amended (Continuing Authority Program)
Cedar Lake is a 781-acre glacially formed lake located within the Town of Cedar Lake in northwest Indiana. Historically, the lake supported a biologically diverse ecosystem typical of northern glacial lakes. Since the late nineteenth century, modifications to the lake and contributing watershed have resulted in adverse effects to the lake’s fringe wetland habitat, littoral zone habitat, lake-bottom substrates, and aquatic species richness. Surrounding watershed practices have accelerated lacustrine succession resulting in an impaired aquatic ecosystem with shallower less diverse aquatic habitat.
Problems to be addressed by the proposed project include lack of suitable substrates for aquatic species, lack of submergent and emergent aquatic plants within the littoral zone, absence of native fish community, fragmentation of tributaries, dominance of non-native invasive species, and imbalance of physical matrix and chemical parameters of abiotic habitat. Features of the proposed project include restoration of 35 acres of emergent and 95 acres of submergent aquatic plants within the littoral (near-shore) zone, reestablishment of a native fish community, rerouting of Founder’s Creek to its historic connection with Cedar Lake, physical substrate restoration through removal of 263,000-cubic yards of sediment, chemical substrate restoration through alum dosage over 400-acres of lake bottom, and implementation of institutional controls.
The Corps has completed plan formulation and cost effectiveness and incremental cost analysis of the generated alternative plans to develop a tentatively selected plan. The local sponsor requested that the Corps pursue a locally-preferred plan (LPP) and acknowledged that the incremental cost would be borne by the local sponsor. The local sponsor has decided to pursue the LPP. An alternative formulation briefing with USACE Lakes and Rivers Division (LRD) and USACE Headquarters was conducted in Fiscal Year 2012 (FY12). An LPP waiver request was submitted to USACE Headquarters and was approved April 28, 2016. USACE is now finalizing preparations for release of the draft feasibility study and integrated environmental assessment for public review.
The report was released for public review and comment on July 7, 2016. The public comment period ended on August 22, 2016. A public meeting to provide additional information about the report and to seek input from the community was held on July 14, 2016. To view a copy of the slides presented at the meeting click here.
The Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works (ASA(CW)) approved the Final Feasibility Report and submitted it to Congress on January 18, 2019. USACE, Chicago district received approval to move to the Preconstruction, Engineering and Design (PED) Phase. The Design Agreement (DA) needed to begin the PED Phase was approved by the USACE Lakes and Rivers Division (CELRD). Execution of DA is awaiting City Council approval.