The 161-acre impoundment in the Pigeon River Country State Forest will be lowered by 6 feet to comply with a state safety order and prepare for the renovation of Cornwall Dam

Cornwall Creek Flooding will be lowered beginning Aug. 12, with the goal of preserving the impoundment for recreation and wildlife. Access to the flooding will be affected, and the Shore-to-Shore equestrian trail will be rerouted during the project.

Huron Pines is leading the two-phase project, which is owned by the DNR Fisheries Division.

Public access via Tin Bridge Road will remain open during the project but access to the water will become increasingly difficult or impossible as it recedes. Exposed soils will be very soft and may be dangerous to people attempting to reach the water. The Shore-to-Shore equestrian trail, which crosses over the dam, will be closed and a detour will be implemented.

The project’s planned second phase will see the construction of a new water intake structure, the permanent decommission of the existing structure and the return of the flooding to current levels. A new intake structure designed to meet EGLE dam-safety standards and earn the approval of the DNR’s Natural Rivers program has yet to be finalized.

$1.5 million has been secured for the project so far through a combination of grants, state allocation and an ongoing public fundraising campaign.