The Lake Effect effort is focused on shared long-term goals for the city’s best asset: Revitalizing the lakefront, making it safer, more ecologically friendly, and improving access to and along the shore.

“If we can accomplish that, we’ll have done the best we can for Wayzata.”
– Mayor Ken Willcox

Lake Effect Park moves forward with action on five strategic next steps

On August 3rd, the Wayzata City Council voted in support of moving forward with the Lake Effect Park Project. The Council approved:

Scope of the Lake Effect Implementation Plan:

  • Transforming the Lake Edge—Build shoreline improvements from “Eco Park” to the Depot, including restored wetland and renovated Section Foreman House, the boardwalk with improved connections to the Depot and Boat Works and lake edge ecological restoration, two enhanced railroad crossings and the transformation of the Municipal Lake/Broadway parking lot into an Urban Park (contingent upon Council approval of the Mill Street Parking Ramp).
  • Pop-Up Park—If the Council approves the building of the Mill Street Parking Ramp, design and construct a temporary or Pop-Up park, and schedule varying programing ideas, at the existing Lake/Broadway parking lot to test the community use preferences of the space.
  • Enhancing Lake Street—Redesign and build Lake Street to be more pedestrian/bike friendly with a new road, enhanced streetscape and safer, protected bike path connecting to the Dakota Trail.

Pre-Design Requirements:

  • Environmental Assessment Worksheet of the newly defined scope
  • Maintenance and Operations cost estimate of the approved scope
  • Technical design support for the next nine months

Conservancy Agreement:

Also included in the Lake Effect package was the City of Wayzata/Lake Effect Conservancy Public-Private Partnership Agreement. The Council approved this agreement that defines private and public fundraising roles and responsibilities of each institution.

Next Steps

With the approval of all five components, the next round of work begins:

  • The City of Wayzata can initiate the required nine-month Environmental Assessment and public comment period
  • Accurate cost estimates can be developed for the now defined project scope
  • The Conservancy can begin fundraising for capital and maintenance + operations costs.

Thank You!

A big thanks to the Council for their leadership on moving the Lake Effect Park forward and the Community for their support in helping shape this project to fulfill residents hopes and desires.

The new park will provide a vastly improved lakefront that will be more accessible, ecologically healthy and beautiful. For the first time in 100 years, people will be able to safely cross the railroad tracks and walk the length of the downtown lakefront. The lakeshore will be restored to its former natural condition. The quality of rainwater that flows into the lake will be improved. Residents will be able to stroll, sit, fish, and dip their toes into the water as never before.

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