Whitewater park plans (copy)

Water passes through the Stoughton Dam on a chilly morning in 2018.

An informational meeting on the proposed whitewater park development and potential dam removal is scheduled for next week.

At 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 4, during a committee of the whole meeting, alders are planning to discuss how to move forward with the proposed dam removal after the state Department of Natural Resources denied the city a $400,000 municipal dam removal grant.

The cost to remove the dam is around $562,000, according to an email from parks and recreation director Dan Glynn to the Hub, and is part of a proposed larger project to build a recreational whitewater park near Mandt Park on the Yahara River.

The Feb. 4 Committee of the Whole meeting is meant as an information session for alders to make a future decision on dam removal; there will be no public comment period, nor any votes taken.

The Common Council will have the final say on any decisions regarding the project, but take into consideration recommendations from the whitewater park steering committee.

Since the city did not secure the grant funding for 2021, parks and recreation director Dan Glynn told the Hub there are four options on how to proceed:

  • Abandon the idea of a whitewater park and remove the dam with the DNR grant funding.
  • Attempt to redefine a dam in state law, to make the project eligible for the grant.
  • Design the whitewater park without the dam removal grant funding.
  • Keep the dam in place.

For information, email Glynn at DGlynn@ci.stoughton.wi.us

-Mackenzie Krumme