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Minneapolis locks closed to recreational traffic for the third time this year

Published June 24, 2013
Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam is located in downtown Minneapolis.

Upper St. Anthony Falls Lock and Dam is located in downtown Minneapolis.

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, closed its three Twin Cities locks to recreational boats this weekend due to increasing high water flows in the Mississippi River.

The Upper St. Anthony Falls and Lower St. Anthony Falls locks in downtown Minneapolis and Lock and Dam 1, located next to Minnehaha Park in Minneapolis, were closed this weekend, when flows passed 30,000 cubic feet per second, or cfs. This is the third time this year the Corps has had to close these three locks due to high flows. All three were closed from May 1-7 and May 23-31.

Based on National Weather Service forecasts, it could be a week before flows are below 30,000 cfs and the upper three locks are, once again, open to recreational traffic.

According to the Corps' Mississippi Valley Division lock and dam regulation manual, the district is required to close the lock and dams to recreational traffic at 30,000 cfs because the high flows are unsafe. Commercial traffic at these locks is shut down at 40,000 cfs.

The nearly 700 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 2011 $175 million budget, nearly 2,800 non-Corps jobs were added to the regional economy as well as $271 million to the national economy. For more information, see www.mvp.usace.army.mil.

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Release no. 13-078