Open House on River Trail Project

The City of Two Rivers, Village of Mishicot and Bay-Lake Regional Planning Commission have been working for over a year on a project to improve and promote access to the East and West Twin Rivers for recreational use, notably canoeing and kayaking.

Officially dubbed the “Twin Rivers Water Trail,” the project addresses the East Twin River starting at the Mishicot dam and the West Twin River starting at the Shoto dam, downstream to their confluence in downtown TR, at the harbor on Lake Michigan.

On the East Twin River, there is also a second trail segment, from upstream of the Mishicot dam (by the covered bridge) to STH 147.

A citizen steering committee has worked with staff from Bay-Lake RPC to develop maps, proposed signage, a logo, and plans for upgrading and adding access points along the rivers to promote greater public use.

If you would like to learn more about the Twin Rivers Water Trail, there will be a community open house on the project next Monday, May 14, from 5:00 to 6:00 PM at Woodland Dunes Nature Center, 3000 Hawthorne Avenue in Two Rivers.

This project is being funded with assistance from Wisconsin’s Coastal Management Program, and has received local funding support from Two Rivers Rotary.

Council Approves $3.8 Million WWTP Project

On Monday of this week, the City Council awarded a contract for a $3.8 million upgrade project at the City’s wastewater treatment plant.

This work includes the highest priority items identified in a 2017 assessment report that evaluated the treatment plant and the 17 pumping stations that deliver sewage to the plant for treatment before discharge to Lake Michigan.

Most of the work in this contract is at the “head end” of the plant, where raw sewage flows into the facility for treatment.

It includes upgrades to the raw wastewater pump station, including the addition of grit control, construction of a new headworks building, a new 500 kw generator for emergency power, new supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system, and some new process equipment.

While there were only two bids on the project, we were pleased that the bids were only about $70,000 (1.8 percent) apart, and within one percent of the engineer’s cost estimate for the project.  That’s good news, as a strong economy and tariffs on steel have been pushing up costs for major construction projects.

Inclusive of engineering design and construction oversight, this is a $4.4 million project.  It will be financed over 20 years with a Clean Water Fund loan from the State of Wisconsin, at 1.8 percent annual interest.  The project also qualifies for $700,000 in “principal forgiveness” funding from the State, so the net amount to be financed is $3.7 million.

A pretty big investment.  But continued investment in our wastewater facilities is necessary to assure reliable, safe and efficient operation.  And to protect our tremendous water resource of Lake Michigan.

County Board OK’s Transfer of Wayside to City

At its meeting on April 24, the Manitowoc County Board authorized the transfer of ownership of the wayside on Memorial Drive at Woodland Drive to the City of Two Rivers.

Actually, since a portion of the land beneath the wayside is owned by the County and a portion by WisDOT, the County will first convey its land to the DOT, which will in turn convey the entire site to the City.

Why take over the wayside and an estimated $30,000 annual maintenance cost?    First of all, so this heavily-used facility along Lake Michigan can be managed locally, allowing the City to:

  • Keep the restrooms open for the “full” tourist season, rather than opening them just before Memorial Day and closing just after Labor Day, as has been the case in some years under State ownership
  • Better accommodate community special events at this premier park property
  • Better accommodate the installation, maintenance and promotion of the “Spirit of the Rivers” sculpture, an amazing piece of public art that will be installed just north of the wayside this summer and dedicated in September (www.spiritoftherivers.org).

We hope to conclude this transaction within the month, so this great property at the south entrance to Two Rivers will become part of our city park system.

Two Rivers City Manager Greg Buckley can be contacted by calling 920-793-5532 or by e-mailing gbuckley@two-rivers.org.

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