Omaha, Neb. – A draft environmental assessment to evaluate the impacts of reclassifying the land use of approximately 125 acres at the Oahe Project in South Dakota is currently available for public review. Management Unit 60, also known as Sibley Nature Park, would be reclassified from Environmentally Sensitive to Multiple Resource Management – Low Density Recreation. If determined that there are no significant impacts, this change would be documented in the Oahe Dam/Lake Oahe Master Plan.
The current land classification does not meet usage demands. There is a need to manage the area for Low Density Recreation which better reflects on the ground conditions of the management unit and to ensure the Oahe Project can meet a higher demand due to development around the site. MU 60 is managed by the City of Bismarck and the Sakakawea Girl Scout Council and is used year-round by local residents for bird watching, photography, cross-country skiing, and hiking. The Sakakawea Girl Scout Council leases a portion of this park (Camp Neche) for education and camping programs.
Multiple Resource Management – Low Density Recreation lands are designated for dispersed and/or low-impact recreation use. Development of facilities on these lands is limited. Emphasis is on providing opportunities for non-motorized activities such as walking, fishing, hunting, or nature study. Site-specific, low-impact activities such as primitive camping and picnicking may be allowed. Some limited facilities are permitted, including boat ramps, irrigation intakes, trails, parking areas and vehicle controls, vault toilets, picnic tables, and fire rings.
The public is encouraged to provide comments on the draft environmental assessment, which is available for viewing at: http://www.nwo.usace.army.mil/Missions/Civil-Works/Planning/Project-Reports/. Comments can be mailed to: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Omaha District; CENWO-PM-AC; ATTN: Oahe MU 60; 1616 Capitol Avenue; Omaha, NE 68102-4901. Comments can also be emailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Comments must be postmarked or received no later than August 23, 2017.
Release no. 17-069