US Army Corps of Engineers
St. Paul District Website

Lac qui Parle Dam

Published Sept. 25, 2017
Updated: April 16, 2020

This dam modification and equipment refurbishment project replaces nine sluice gates and associated operating equipment and installs a permanent stop log dewatering system to provide a dry environment to allow for sluice gate and concrete inspection, maintenance, repair and modifications without impeding all flow through the dam.


Lac qui Parle Dam is located on the upper Minnesota River 30 miles east of the South Dakota border. The dam is about 7 river miles upstream of Montevideo, Minnesota and 300 river miles upstream of Minneapolis, Minnesota.


Dam construction was initiated by the state of Minnesota as a Work Progress Administration project. Operation of the project was transferred from the state of Minnesota to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1950. The original authorized purposes were water conservation and flood control, but it is currently operated to include recreation, fish and wildlife, as well as water supply.

The dam is part of the Lac qui Parle project that includes Marsh Lake Dam, Watson Sag Weir and the Chippewa River Diversion. Highway 75 Dam (Big Stone Lake) is located 40 miles upstream of the Lac qui Parle Dam.

Dewatering the upstream side of the concrete control structure during construction will be accomplished with temporary sheet pile cofferdams that allow work in two gate bays at a time. This will be performed in three stages.


Plans and specifications for the gate replacement and a dewatering system were completed in summer 2019. Construction contract was planned for award in September 2019; however, bids received were well in excess of the Independent Government Estimate (IGE). Work is in progress to update the plans and specifications and re-solicit and construction contract award in summer 2020.


The dam is part of the Lac qui Parle Project authorized by the Flood Control Act of 1936 (Public Law 74‒738),


FY 2019:
A-E Design/Reviews                                       $316,000

FY 2020:
Design                                                                $36,600
E&D During Construction                               $74,300
Construction Contract                                $5,500,000