January 28, 2011
Contact: Lauren Gurniewicz
After months of construction work, Superintendent Bruce Noble is proud to announce that the Veterans Lake area of Chickasaw National Recreation Area’s Platt Historic District has reopened. Thanks to favorable construction weather, the area is reopening several months earlier than anticipated.
Beginning during the summer of 2010, three significant projects began in this area. The first project included a rehabilitation of the 1930s-era Veterans Lake Dam in order to bring the dam into compliance with modern safety standards. The second project was the construction of the north shore portion of the Veterans Lake Trail, including a new trailhead parking area. The North Shore trail is approximately 1 mile long, between the North Shore Road and the shoreline, with a connecting trail to Rock Creek Campground. The road across the dam and the parking lot at the south end of the dam were removed and a trail and new parking lot at the north end of the dam were built as a replacement. The third project involved the extensive removal of eastern red cedar in the vicinity of the lake. The red cedar removal and the North Shore trail construction were funded by the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act, while the dam improvements were funded by the National Park Service Dam Safety program.
The park will host a grand re-opening of the area this Spring. It is hoped that natural rainfall will have refilled the lake to near its normal level by the time of the re-opening ceremony. Superintendent Bruce Noble said, “We want to welcome area residents and park visitors back to Veterans Lake. I am certain that these projects have created a safer and more enjoyable area.”