MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Construction has begun to replace a structure designed to keep polluted water and invasive species out of Lake Nokomis.
The weir at Minnehaha Creek, a dam-like device that holds back water, is getting key upgrades.
Built in 2000 as the lake’s only outlet, the original weir could be adjusted to release water if lake levels get too high. It also helped to prevent the transport of zebra mussels and other invasive species from the creek to the lake.
After 12 years of use, the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board decided it was time for a facelift.
“The current weir is wearing out,” said Telly Mamayak, communications director for the MCWD. “It’s a structure that had to be inflated every time the water got high enough that we needed to protect (lake levels).”
By the end of October, a new, adjustable fixed weir will be installed to provide the same level of protection for Lake Nokomis.
“Taking care of our city’s natural resources is an important part of the work that both the Park Board and the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District do,” said District 5 Park Commissioner Carol Kummer. “This project not only helps keep Lake Nokomis a great place to swim, fish, boat and spend time, but also helps keep the water quality healthy.”
The new weir will require less maintenance and be easier to operate, Mamayak said. The structure will be updated with a limestone-like facade to match the character of the nearby bridge.
Construction will not disrupt navigation on Lake Nokomis, Minnehaha Creek or any nearby roadways.