National Park Service to Restore Great Marsh Wetland this Winter

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Date: January 28, 2016

INDIANA DUNES NATIONAL LAKESHORE: The National Park Service is planning to restore wetlands at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore's Great Marsh over the winter and early spring.  The project consists of the removal of fill and other debris comprised of sand, cement, and rubble that were placed in the marsh during the 20th century. Removal of the debris will expose historic peat soils to wetland hydrology and restore ecosystem services such as water purification, water storage, plant and animal habitat, and recreational viewing. Regulatory permits to conduct the wetland restoration actions have been obtained from the state and federal agencies as required.

The debris to be removed is scattered over approximately four acres of the Great Marsh. The work will be done just east and west of Broadway in the Town of Beverly Shores. A National Park Service Archaeologist will be on-site during excavation to protect any archaeological resources that may be unearthed. Removal of the pine trees north of the train station is necessary to complete this work, but the bald cypress trees along Broadway will be retained. Removal of the debris may require periodic, short-term closure of the Great Marsh parking lot east of Broadway for safety.

Wetland plants, present prior to human modification of the region’s hydrology, will be planted in the restoration area. These plant assemblages will be the same as those observed in the Great Marsh by early 20th century botanists. Questions may be directed to Botanist, Dr. Dan Mason at 219-395-1553 or Acting Chief of Resources Management, Gia Wagner at 219-395-1552.

Last updated: January 28, 2016

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