As proposed by the Diversion Authority, the project design features include:
- a 30-mile long diversion channel,
- a 6-mile long connecting channel,
- 12 miles of tie-back embankments,
- 4 miles of overflow embankment, and
- levee/ floodwall features in Fargo, North Dakota and Moorhead, Minnesota.
When in operation, the project staging area would store flood waters on about 33,000 acres within a 38,400 acre area, in order to avoid increases in downstream flooding. Flows would be controlled via two dams, one on the Red River and one on the Wild Rice River:
- The Wild Rice River dam would be located in North Dakota and not subject to Minnesota permit requirements.
- The DNR has determined that the proposed dam on the Red River would be classified as a Class I Dam under the State's Dam Safety permitting rules (MN Rules part 6115.0340). Therefore, the DNR must produce an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed project, as required by MN Rules part 4410.4400, subpart 18. The dam would need a DNR Dam Safety permit prior to construction.