- Associated Press - Monday, March 9, 2015

MUNCIE, Ind. (AP) - Experts at Ball State University say they’ve found problems with a recently released feasibility study done for a proposed reservoir in central Indiana.

The Star Press (https://tspne.ws/1Hn6MnS ) reports problems include a “clear lack of understanding” of geological issues that could be caused by forming the Mounds Lake reservoir, such as limestone dissolution. They also said there’s a lack of demand for water at such a large scale.

The plan calls for the formation of a 2,100-acre reservoir by damming the White River in Anderson at an estimated cost of $440 million. The flood area would include Anderson’s Mounds Mall, about 400 homes and part of Mounds State Park, the site of mounds built more than 2,000 years ago by the Adena-Hopewell people.

Rob Sparks of the Corporation for Economic Development of Madison County, which is leading the reservoir effort, said many parts of the plan called into question by Ball State experts wouldn’t be addressed until further design work is done.

“We would totally agree, much more work will need to be done in order to know if Mounds Lake can be built,” Sparks said.

The proposal has drawn opposition from environmental groups. It was also criticized last month by Thomas Holman, former director of engineering for the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, who said the reservoir isn’t needed for water supplies and wouldn’t do much for flood control.

A state-funded feasibility study, overseen by the local development corporation, released last month found no major problems that would hold up the project. Ball State experts also said in their critique of the study that it included “very optimistic” costs for land acquisition and an incomplete review of potentially impacted archaeological sites.

Mounds Lake would be Indiana’s first new reservoir in more than four decades.


Information from: The Star Press, https://www.thestarpress.com

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