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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
St. Paul District
Programs & Project Management
180 5th St. E., Suite 700
St. Paul MN 55101

(651) 290-5755.


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Posted 2/27/2015

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Updated September 2017

Location/ Project Components
Lake Traverse is on the Minnesota-South Dakota border between Browns Valley, Minnesota, and Wahpeton, North Dakota/Breckenridge, Minnesota. It consists of two dams, two reservoirs and the Browns Valley Dike.

Orwell Lake on the Otter Tail River is approximately six miles southwest of Fergus Falls, Minnesota. It consists of an earthen embankment, outlying dikes, and a gated service spillway.

Highway 75 Dam is on the upper Minnesota River near Odessa, Minnesota. It impounds the Big Stone National Wildlife Refuge.

Lac qui Parle is on the Minnesota River near Montevideo, Minnesota. It consists of three dams, a diversion channel and several embankments and levees.

Red Lake Dam is located at the outlet of Lower Red Lake in the northeastern part of Clearwater County, Minnesota. It consists of an earthen embankment, a concrete weir with three lift gates and two stoplog bays.

All include flood risk management, recreation and environmental stewardship business line functions. Each has public use facilities for shore fishing, picnicking, bird watching and other activities. The land is actively managed for habitat enhancement.

Flood risk management, recreation and environmental stewardship activities are completed by site staff at Lake Traverse, Orwell Lake and Lac qui Parle. These sites also support readiness (emergency) response activities in the Minnesota and Red River basins. Water control activities have a direct impact on flood responses in the downstream communities. Low flows are managed for fish and wildlife purposes and water supply for communities on the Red River of the North.

Since their construction, the reservoirs have prevented flood damages as shown below:
Lake Traverse $4,460,000,000
Orwell Lake    $706,000,000
Big Stone/Whetstone     $3,500,000
Lac qui Parle      $39,000,000
Red Lake      $20,000,000


Emergency work to repair the erosion and sink hole on the Lac qui Parle Dam was completed in spring 2017. The Architecture and Engineering design for the replacement of the gates, operators, concrete repairs and a dewatering system is scheduled to begin this fall.  Additional funding is needed to award a contract to complete the project.




FY14 Alloc




FY18 Pres Budget

Lake Traverse




$579K $693K

Orwell Lake




$475K $592K

Big Stone



$257K $257K $290K

Lac qui Parle



$1,805K $891K $1,115K

Red Lake



$184K $165K $181K

Flood Control Sites flood risk management reservoirs Sty. Paul District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers