US Army Corps of Engineers
St. Paul District Website


Disposition Study, Upper St. Anthony Falls and Lock and Dam, Upper Mississippi River

Published March 14, 2016
Updated: Sept. 19, 2019
Click here: Project page with detailed information and reports

A Section 216 study will investigate the appropriate future disposition of Upper St. Anthony Falls (USAF) Lock and Dam, located in Minneapolis, Minnesota..


The USAF Lock and Dam was completed as part of the Minneapolis Upper Harbor project in 1963 as authorized by the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1937.

USAF was closed to navigation on June 9, 2015, as ordered by Section 2010 of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers continues to operate USAF for flood damage mitigation.

The Corps began a disposition study for Upper St. Anthony Falls, Lower St. Anthony Falls and Lock and Dam 1 in 2018. With passage of America’s Water Infrastructure Act on October 24, 2018, the Corps was directed to perform and expedite a separate study for Upper St. Anthony Falls. The first study was put on hold and re-scoped to focus on Upper St. Anthony Falls. A second study for Lower St. Anthony Falls and Lock and Dam 1 will be performed at a later time. America’s Water Infrastructure Act directed that the Upper St. Anthony Falls disposition study examine an alternative in which the Corps retains operation and maintenance of the flood risk management features of the project, while making other portions of the project available for disposition and redevelopment. The act also directed the Corps to consider measures to maintain or improve the human environment, the natural environment and recreational opportunities (“soft topics”).


The Corps began the disposition study for Upper St. Anthony Falls in May 2019. Public information meetings were held in August 2019. Alternatives will include no action, full disposition and partial disposition of the project as well as the “soft topics” mentioned above.

A draft report will be available for 60 days of public review in spring 2020. The final report will be complete in fall 2020. As part of the disposition study and report, an environmental assessment will be prepared in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act.

If disposal is recommended, federal property disposal is managed by the General Services Administration as governed by federal law. Additional studies and environmental assessments may be required if the recommendation includes modification to the existing features following federal disposal or partial disposal. Additional studies would likely be funded by a non-federal sponsor or would require authority for a new start feasibility study if done in partnership with the federal government.


Section 216 of the Flood Control Act of 1970 allows the Corps to study completed projects or their operation when found advisable due to significantly changed physical or economic conditions.


The cost of the study is $896,000 funded under the investigation appropriation.