FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE1/7/2014Contact: Gerry Shimek, Supervisory Wildlife Refuge Specialist, 952-858-0705Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge to close Black Dog Trail in Burnsville until 12/31/14.Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge (Refuge) is working in conjunction with the Metropolitan Council (Met Council) to fix an aging sewer line. Gerry Shimek, Supervisory Wildlife Refuge Specialist at the refuge, stated that "The Met Council Environmental Services is rehabilitating a 4 - 6 foot diameter raw sewage line (referred to as an "interceptor") that is underneath the Black Dog Trail. Inspections of the interceptor showed that it is starting to show it's age and Met Council wants to fix it before there is a break that spills raw sewage. We believe that it is a good thing, for the environment and for Refuge visitors, to repair the line before there are problems."Work will start on January 8, 2014 and is expected to run through December 31, 2014. The trail will be closed because most of the pipe lies directly beneath it, and heavy machinery will be used to replace the pipe. Some large trees will be removed from along side the trail where more room is needed for heavy equipment operation. The construction techniques have been reviewed and approved by the Refuge and otherregulatory agency staff. Project operations will be inspected or reviewed by Refuge staff on a frequent basis. The Met Council agrees that the Refuge lands require special attention to minimize damage. They are using state-of-the-art techniques and flexible scheduling to minimize damage to Refuge resources. Met Council is committed to restoring any areas they unavoidably damage as part of this project.
Work is also being done on the Bluff Trail. Watch for construction and heavy equipment.
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