March 2018 update: The necessary modeling process is underway but is taking longer than anticipated. As a result, the decision related to the dam's fate is now expected during the summer of 2018.
The Department of Natural Resources conducted a public meeting on Sept. 26, 2017, at the Hinckley Community Center to share information and answer questions regarding plans to address concerns with the Grindstone River dam located in Hinckley.
In its most recent inspection by DNR dam safety engineers, the structure received a rating of "poor". Unfortunately, there have also been two documented fatal incidents related to the dam. In this case, the status quo isn't acceptable so a project at this location has been considered for some time.
DNR staff from different divisions and with various expertise were present and shared information that has been considered to arrive at the current preferred alternative, which is to remove the dam and restore the river.
Department staff stressed that this is not a fixed decision and is subject to change, based on the input received and DNR's ability to address the issues. The final decision about the course of action to take with the dam will be made by DNR leadership sometime during
winter 2017-18 the summer of 2018.
The evening's discussions and comments received will inform the DNR's plan moving forward. We are committed to addressing the concerns identified by the community in any way that preserves our ability to address recreation, safety, infrastructure, ecology, cost and history issues.