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Natural Resource Damage Assessment
Tittabawassee River, Michigan
Restoration Plan and Projects
Funding available for natural resource restoration
The Tittabawassee River Natural Resource Trustee Council, together with the Saginaw River and Bay Trustee Council, are jointly announcing the availability of funding for restoration projects to be implemented in the Saginaw Bay watershed, including in and along the Tittabawassee and Saginaw rivers. The two Trustee Councils will provide a total of approximately $5.75 million to fund restoration projects, in addition to projects already described in the restoration plans for the two settlements.
The Trustees are asking people to submit pre-proposals that the Trustee Councils will then screen and evaluate for their merit relative to restoration project criteria. A web-based application portal will be used to collect project ideas from the public and other stakeholders as pre-proposals. Access to the application portal, the restoration plans, and a summary of the criteria to be used to evaluate pre-proposals may be found at the Trustees' Restoration Funding site.
Restoration project pre-proposals must be submitted by Dec. 31, 2021.
In their Restoration Plan, the Trustees evaluated a range of restoration actions and alternatives which would provide benefits to natural resources to compensate the public for losses to natural resources injured by releases from Dow's Midland plant. The Trustees released the Draft Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment for the Tittabawassee River System on November 8, 2019, for public review and comment through December 30, 2019. Based on the comments received, the Trustees published the Final Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment for the Tittabawassee River System on March 10, 2020.
Restoration projects that Dow will implement or fund:
The Dow Dam on the Tittabawassee River in Midland currently impedes fish passage during most flow conditions. The Midland Fish Passage Project will provide a fish passage structure that improves the ability for fish to swim upstream and downstream while maintaining water elevations upstream. The Project will provide fish access to important upstream aquatic habitats and expand recreational fishing opportunities.
Preserves and enhances 140 acres of forest and marsh habitat in Midland, providing a unique urban nature preserve adjacent to the existing Stratford Woods Park.
Preserves and enhances 1,460 acres of existing farmland and woodlands across three tracts southeast of Midland. The approximately 940 acres of farmland currently present will be restored to natural habitat, including wetlands. Provides public access trails and conservation education in prairie, wetland and forest habitats.
Preserves 490 acres of floodplain habitat along the Tittabawassee River south of Midland. The existing 175 acres of farmland on the site will be restored to natural habitat. Develops approximately 2 miles of bike trail and additional nature trails within the floodplain, along the Tittabawassee River, with the goal of connecting to the Great Lakes Bay Regional Trail, a larger bike trail system in the area.
Provides partial funding to restore 60 acres of farmland which will be open to the public as a nature preserve with outdoor recreation, including river access for kayaking, canoeing and fishing.
Protects 2,000 acres of private land in the Tittabawassee River floodplain, between Midland and Saginaw, from future development through conservation easements (as of October of 2019, over 1,800 acres already recorded).
Provides funding to help create and maintain the 332 acres of Saginaw Riverfront Park in urban Saginaw.
Provides funding for restoration enhancements expected to affect 2,708 acres.
Land for hunting will be acquired, preserved, and made available to the public using $1.2 million in dedicated funds. This is in addition to preserving approximately 150 acres along the Tittabawassee River in Saginaw that was already purchased with funding provided by Dow and is being managed by the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge.
Expands parking capabilities by 50 spaces and increases the boat launch lanes from 5 to 8 to improve capacity and efficiencies at this popular Michigan Department of Natural Resources access site.
Preserves and restores wetlands, lake plain prairie and other habitat types on 415 acres near the mouth of the Saginaw River, including phragmites management and incorporating nature trails and shoreline fishing opportunities.
Provides funds to allow the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and its partners to construct a rock reef, or reefs, in Saginaw Bay to provide fish habitat and spawning areas.
Provides funding to preserve and restore approximately 80 acres of habitat near Standish by the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan.
Additional projects that Dow will implement under the direction of the State of Michigan:
Provides land and partial funding for a docking facility and education center for BaySail, near the Saginaw River Rear Range Lighthouse and adjacent to the Bay City Ecological Restoration Project.
Provides funding for lighthouse renovation and preservation, adjacent to the Bay City Ecological Restoration Project.