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In early 2022, the MMSD Commission and Milwaukee County Board each approved entering into a three-way Project Partnership Agreement (Agreement) with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for USACE to design and construct a habitat improvement and concrete-lined channel naturalization project in Honey Creek. The project area is described below. Finalizing the Agreement is expected to be completed before summer 2022 with design able to begin in summer 2022.
After the three-way Agreement is signed, MMSD will provide another project update. One or more project information meetings will be planned during the design process, which is expected to take one to two years.
Thank you to all who attended the June 18th public information meeting. If you were unable to attend, please review the presentation. A recording of the public information meeting is also available.
To submit any questions or comments about the project or to receive MMSD project update emails, please scroll to the bottom of the page.
The Honey Creek Flood Management and Habitat Restoration project parallels work that was undertaken in Underwood Creek. Like Underwood Creek, in the 1950s and 1960s, Honey Creek was transformed into a concrete-lined ditch to address flooding issues and to move water as fast as possible.
Time has shown that concrete-lined channels pose more problems than a natural channel. After Honey Creek was channelized, it became a danger to people during rainstorms due to high speeds of the flow; fish habitats were eliminated, and it led to more severe erosion of the downstream creek banks.
MMSD is now working to return Honey Creek to a more naturalized state to reduce flood risks, improve public safety, and restore habitats. The removal of the 50- years old concrete channel, naturalization of the stream channel, and restoration of the stream bank will improve the habitat of Honey Creek and improve safety by slowing down the creek’s flow during extreme rain events.
MMSD and Milwaukee County have partnered with the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to conduct a Feasibility Study through the USACE’s Aquatic Ecosystem Restoration Program. The goal of the Feasibility Study is to develop alternatives for the replacement of the concrete-lined channel with a naturalized channel to restore habitat. The USACE is funding 65% of the project up to a maximum cost of $10,000,000.
The project in total restores 8,660 feet of Honey Creek. Sections of the channel are in the City of Wauwatosa and the City of Milwaukee with the work taking place on Milwaukee County property.
Learn more about the Honey Creek project by watching this FOX 6 interview with MMSD's senior project manager, Mark Mittag.
The project timeline is subject to change.
Fall 2021: Finalize agreement between USACE/MMSD/Milwaukee County
Fall 2021-2023: Design phase of the project
2023-2024: Construction of the project
Participate in upcoming opportunities for public engagement and feedback. To keep informed about the project, sign-up for project updates.
Follow MMSD on social media (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook) for updates on MMSD projects.
MMSD and the United States Army Corps of Engineers removed 4,400 linear feet of the concrete-lined channel (from Canadian Pacific Railway Bridge to the confluence with the Menomonee River) and replace it with a bioengineered stream; reducing the risk of flooding and improving riparian flood plain and increasing habitat.
This project will help reduce the flood risk along the Menomonee River in Western Milwaukee along West State Street between North 60 Street and USH 175. This project is part of the larger Menomonee River Watercourse Management Plan which aims to reduce the risk of flooding for over 300 homes and businesses.
This project captures and stores potential floodwater in one large basin that covers about 65 acres and holds 315 million gallons of water.