New study of Mounds Lake determines sustainability

Next step in $400 million water supply in Madison County comes in August

By Rick Yencer

ANDERSON, INDIANA (NEWS) - Rob Sparks sees the next step in the feasibility of a new water supply in Madison County coming soon.

A series of community meetings will be held in Madison and Delaware counties to talk about more details of financing, engineering and environmental impact. 

 Information about pool depth like 880 feet or the $400 million price tag already have been discussed, and Sparks said the latest study does not include where utilities and infrastructure might have to be relocated or replaced.

"With the Imagine Mounds Lake sessions, we will ask the community to provide their perspective on the feasibility of Mounds Lake," said Sparks, who directs the Corporation for Economic Development of Anderson-Madison County. "It's about giving the community a voice in this project, every step of the way."

Those steps lately have favored Heart of the River and other opponents who speak to the destruction of homes, wildlife, rare plant species, Indian burial grounds and some of Mounds State Park in the process.

Heart of the River recently had experts talk about geological and hydrological problems with a new lake some consider is only to supply water to Indianapolis.

Sparks said the community had not reached the step of designing the lake or even where infrastructure like bridges would go until more community input besides basic issues like money and environmental concerns are addressed.

The lake will have an impact for providing a continuing water supply  besides changing the landscape for a better quality of life.

As some people think, there's lots of money to be paid in construction, housing and recreation besides the water rights to the reservoir.

And that driving force, with government and business backing, ensures the  latest feasibility study will give a green light for the project.

"To date, nothing has been discovered in the feasibility studies that would prevent this project from happening," said Sparks.

But he also said the project would only move forward with the support of the community.

The project began in 2010 as an idea of the leadership academy of the Anderson-Madison County Chamber of Commerce.

Engineering studies found a great potential for a lake after 2005 floods and proposed a 2,100 acre property providing billions of gallons water for central Indiana.

Sparks said parts of the report would be put online and updates can be found on Twitter @MoundsLakes.

The community meetings are Mounds Mall, Aug. 19-22 (10 a.m.-9 p.m.) and Aug. 23, (11 a.m.-7 p.m.); Chesterfield, Aug. 19, Mill Creek Village, (2-8 p.m.); Daleville, Aug. 20, Daleville Town Office, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., and Yorktown Aug.21, Yorktown Town Court, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

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