The East Branch of the Little Calumet River
The East Branch of the Little Calumet River

The National Park Service is preparing and seeking comment on a draft Environmental Assessment for the “East Branch of the Little Calumet River Use Management Plan” for Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.

This document is a collaborative effort of the National Park Service, the United States Forest Service, and the Urban Waters Initiative to explore and evaluate a full range of recreational opportunities and the environmental impacts of those activities on the East Branch of the Little Calumet River which lies within Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore.

The draft Environmental Assessment is being prepared to ensure the National Lakeshore reviews all impacts and opportunities related to recreational use of the Little Calumet River prior to deciding on a course of action.  For the purpose of this plan the portion of the East Branch of the Little Calumet River which lies within Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore was divided into four sections (referred to as reaches) based upon the boundaries of the National Lakeshore and environmental conditions.  Reach 1 extends through the Heron Rookery (River Mile 16.4 – River Mile 14.8).  Reach 2 extends from U.S. Highway 20 to Indiana State Road 149 (River Mile 7.7 – River Mile 4.5). Reach 3 extends from Indiana State Road 149 to the Izaak Walton Property (River Mile 4.5 – River Mile 1.6).  Reach 4 extends from the Burns Waterway Small Boat Harbor to Portage Lakefront and Riverwalk (River Mile 1.0 – River Mile 0).

All alternatives developed will meet park purposes and objectives while protecting park resources by minimizing impacts, and will be consistent with the legislative intent of Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, applicable NPS laws, policies, and regulations.

If you were unable to attend the public meeting in June, a copy of the draft Environmental Assessment for the East Branch of the Little Calumet River Use Management Plan will be available for review online starting on June 11, 2014 at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/indu.

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