FishPass

Peter Payette

A years-long effort to build an experimental fish ladder on the Boardman River in Traverse City is in jeopardy. That’s all because of a man who decided to sue the city to protect a place he loves. 

Lexi Krupp / IPR News

 

Construction on the nearly $20 million FishPass project in Traverse City is on hold until May, at the earliest. 

Lexi Krupp

 

Donning face masks that read “FishPass,” tribal leaders, federal representatives, and city officials planted shovels into the earth above the Union Street Dam in Traverse City on Saturday. 

Kaye LaFond / Interlochen Public Radio

Rivers all over the world have the same problem — fish can’t swim up them because of dams.

 

Fisheries biologists want to see if they can leave dams in place but allow certain fish to pass, but it’s complicated and the idea has created controversy in Traverse City. 

Gary Langley, FAA certified sUAS pilot / Interlochen Public Radio

This week on Points North, we dive into the restoration of the Boardman River since three dams were removed.

 

The story ties into the thousands of aging dams in Michigan. Many are more than 50 years old, and some aren’t safe. Removing them is good for floodplains and native fish, but it costs money — sometimes more than is available.