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Letter: Let Kinni be natural with falls

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As the former executive director of the Kinnickinnic River Land Trust, I am opposed to the city's plans to reconfigure Lake George.

As a member of a community advisory group, I was very familiar with the details of this

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proposal. The city's plan will formalize the Kinni as the official dumping grounds for the polluted storm water running off of the downtown streets. It will further industrialize the river as it flows through our community.

If you stand on the bridge on Winter Street and look downstream you will see the city's massive sewage treatment facility that looks like it belongs on a much larger river and not a small trout stream.

In front of you is the power plant complex that is responsible for damming the river and burying the falls of River Falls. At your feet and upstream is Lake George, the polluted backwater that is the result of the damming of the Kinni.

The city's latest plans will add to this industrial corridor right in the heart of downtown.?How much more abuse can a spring fed, Class-One trout stream take?

The city continues to treat the Kinni with the 19th century mindset that viewed our rivers and streams as convenient dumping grounds for all of our wastes.? Instead, the city should look to other thriving river communities to see how they've learned to live and benefit from their luck of being located on a special river.

Where is the economic development plan for Main Street that uses the many positive features of the Kinnickinnic as a way to stimulate long-term prosperity??

Where is the parks and open space plan that creates green space corridors along the river??

Where is the river restoration plan that enhances this natural gem in our midst for the benefit of the entire community?

Instead, the city proposes another over-engineered and costly industrial project.

If the city was genuinely interested in protecting the Kinni, it would remove the dams and let the river run free.?Any other plan is a waste of taxpayer money.

Bringing the falls back to River Falls is the only worthwhile proposal befitting this marvelous little river.

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