Pella Chronicle

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October 14, 2012

Ask the Corps

Pella — On Friday, September 28, a new section of roadway opened that offers access to  1,000 acres of Lake Red Rock’s public lands.

Actually the road isn’t completely new – it’s a renovated section of an old road that was closed for many years. Located at the end of 76th Avenue on the northwest side of the lake, this route offers the only reliable access to 1,000 acres of public land at Lake Red Rock.

When Marion County notified the Corps about its plan to vacate this section of road in spring 2011, the Corps and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) approached the Marion County Board of Supervisors about transferring management of it to their respective agencies.  Once Marion County agreed to the transfer, the Corps and DNR began work on rebuilding the road. Maintenance crews cleared trees and brush last fall to reopen the path, and then work progressed in 2012 to: rebuild the washed-out culvert; regrade the road; and rock the 2000-foot stretch of roadway. The DNR, who leases the land from the Corps for wildlife management, will provide routine maintenance of the road.

A small parking lot is located at the end of 76th Avenue for visitors. In our state where less than one percent of land is in public ownership, this road provides a gateway to a large piece of acreage that’s open to hunting, bird watching and other recreation.

The 76th Avenue access is located on the northwest side of the lake.  From State Highway 14, turn onto Carpenter Street (look for brown “Public Area” sign) and drive west about five miles to the 76th Avenue turnoff.  Follow 76th Avenue south about ½ mile to the new section of road.  

Thanks to the Marion County Board of Supervisors, Marion County Engineer, the Iowa DNR and adjacent landowners for assisting with this project.  For more information, contact the Corps office at (641) 828-7522 or (641) 628-8690.

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