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Grand River Restoration Project

The Grand River Restoration Project is an initiative headed by Grand Rapids Whitewater (GRWW). It is their goal to partner with the city and region to create a safer, more exciting river experience for everyone. The project consists of four significant elements including:

  • Removing five aging dams, including the Sixth Street dam, thereby revealing the regionally rare bedrock rapids in the upper reach of the project area currently submerged by the Sixth Street dam

  • Restoring the lower rapids and restoring a more natural river flow by installing boulders and substrate

  • Constructing at the upstream end of the project (north of Leonard Street Bridge) a new operable structure providing increased public safety and flood control, preventing non-native Sea Lamprey from spawning upstream, allowing fish passage, and providing recreational benefits to enhance rowing upstream and kayaking/canoeing downstream

  • Improving habitat for fish and other aquatic species by restoring historical spawning areas for threatened Lake Sturgeon, increasing opportunities for fish passage and connectivity, and improving the quality of habitat for federally endangered mussels.

These elements would restore the river as close to its natural state as possible while still providing a barrier for invasive species, providing flood protection upstream, and avoiding any impacts downstream. Additionally, these changes would provide environmental, social and cultural, and economic benefits to the City of Grand Rapids. To read more about the details of the Grand River Restoration Project and GRWW, click here.

As a project partner, LGROW supports GRWW through many initiatives. Through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP), Phase One of the Grand River Restoration is occuring. The RCPP has allowed funding to flow to the Grand River Restoration Project. Read more about the RCPP initiative here.

Join us at Events

As a partner in the project, LGROW supports the work of GRWW. In the summer of 2019, we will be supporting the Grand River Restoration Project through these events:

In the News:


Let's put the RAPIDS back in the Grand for everyone!