Another improvement has arrived as part of the Dam Strong project. Crews today installed a safety railing around the dam basin. That took some engineering ingenuity. Because of the topography, the basin infrastructure is not perfectly symmetrical nor entirely of the same height. The installers first placed the partially finished structure, experimented with the measurements at the shop, and manufactured the final product that you see.
Because of the efforts of the Clark Lake community, the dam site is a totally new world, and much more inviting. It is Mike McKay’s vision of how the finished work could look that brought about the amazing appearance makeover. Not only did he work out the design, but also underwrote the cost of laying the concrete apron around the basin and the cement platforms that support the Spirit Trail benches. Wilcox Lawn and Landscaping donated the sod and its installation, as well as the plantings along the south boundary. The irrigation system they installed gave the new landscaping a fighting chance during the dry summer days. The Beach Bar’s John Collins, has volunteered to keep the grass mowed. That’s no small feat when you consider that mowing will involve navigating around the Spirit Trail benches. John has also donated the bike rack located along the east edge of the basin. The benches were placed by the Spirit Trail committee through donations made by Clark Lakers.
What was the genesis of this project? When the integrity of the dam was threatened, Clark Lake took notice. A catastrophic failure could have meant the lake level would be reduced by two feet or more. Now both north and south shoulders have been rebuilt, eliminating the threat. Bill Bendele’s construction team began work on the south shoulder fall of 2017. The north shoulder was rebuilt in 2012.
Dam Strong is a project of the Clark Lake Spirit Foundation, part of the mission to Stand Up for Clark Lake. As you can see, many came together to support and collaborate on this project. It’s truly evidence the Clark Lake Spirit is alive, well, and more vigorous than ever.
Click here to learn about the Dam Strong Honor Roll.
Some more dam photos.