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Corps of Engineers continues Lac Qui Parle Dam construction

Published Nov. 18, 2016

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, completed the first phase of its planned Lac Qui Parle Dam repairs Thursday, Nov. 17.  

The dam is located on the Minnesota River in west-central Minnesota, near Watson, Minnesota.  

Additional repairs are expected to be completed in the coming weeks. In order to support the ongoing repairs, the St. Paul District is lowering the Lac Qui Parle pool level. The Corps plans to lower the pool nearly 1 foot to an elevation no lower than elevation 933 feet by Thanksgiving. The current elevation is 933.8 feet. Normal summer pool is elevation 933 feet, while normal winter pool elevation is 934 feet. Flows from the dam were increased by around 400 cubic feet per second, or cfs, yesterday in order to draw down the pool.  

By Thanksgiving, the Corps will reduce flows from the dam to match the incoming flows to the lake. The released flows from the dam will be further reduced Monday, Nov. 28, to 400 cfs or less. Normal November flow is 350 cfs, and inflow is currently around 900 cfs. The Corps hopes to raise the pool elevation back to the normal level of 934 feet by early December.  

Corps engineers discovered a sinkhole on the dam embankment Oct. 28. While assessing the sinkhole, divers found scouring under the abutment wall footings and concrete dam apron. None of these issues are an imminent threat to the integrity of the dam, but actions are being taken to immediately correct these issues.  
The nearly 600 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, employees working at more than 40 sites in five upper-Midwest states serve the American public in the areas of environmental enhancement, navigation, flood damage reduction, water and wetlands regulation, recreation sites and disaster response. Through the Corps’ Fiscal Year 2015 $100 million budget, nearly 1,600 non-Corps jobs were added to the regional economy as well as $155 million to the national economy. For more information, see 



Public Affairs

Release no. 093