Free the Fox River

Army Corps Accepting Public Comments on Fox River Dam Removal

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After more than two decades, the research is clear. Dam removal along the Fox River is the most effective, economical, and best way to rehabilitate water quality for our Fox River. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) held three public meeting to discuss the findings of the Tentatively Selected Plan, which recommends nine (9) dam removals to improve habitat, water quality, and the health of the river in perpetuity.

Click here to see the USACE’s website with its report and recommendations

The public meetings to gather local input have concluded, but the USACE will still be accepting public comments through Monday, November 6, 2023. Comments and/or questions can be sent to Mr. Ryan Johnson, biologist, at:

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Videos of the three public meetings, including public comments, will be made available to the public soon, so check back often.

Click here to watch the informational portion of the public meeting held in Elgin on Tuesday, Sept. 19.

Human activity in the Fox River Valley over the past two centuries has led to steady habitat loss and degradation, fragmentation, sedimentation, the influx of algae and invasive species, and the loss of native plants and animals.

Removing dams along the Fox River restores it to its natural, free-flowing state and reverses centuries of environmental decline

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The Fox River Study Group (FRSG), which has conducted extensive water quality sampling and river modeling has found that removal of the dams is the most cost effective means to improve water quality concerns that must be addressed, according to the Illinois EPA.  Kane County is a contributing member of the Fox River Study Group.

The FRSG’s findings show there is overwhelming scientific research supporting a solution for reversing the Fox River’s habitat loss, pollution, and the dominance of invasive species. Removing dams along the Fox River restores it to its natural, free-flowing state and reverses centuries of environmental decline.

Learn more about the FRSG by visiting:

The USACE plan recommends the removal of dams in Carpentersville, Elgin, South Elgin, St. Charles, Geneva, Batavia, North Aurora, Aurora, and Montgomery.

Removing Dams along the Fox River

  • Restores a free-flowing current, reducing sedimentation and algae blooms while improving water quality
  • Connects the river, supporting mussel, fish, and amphibian habitats
  • Supports the restoration of habitat for native plants, birds, and small mammals along the riverbanks
  • Enhances the Fox River’s ability to absorb and filter urban and agricultural runoff
  • Provides increased opportunities for fishing, kayaking, canoeing, and the use of small boats
  • Removes the danger of drowning at dams
  • Allows the Fox River to naturally solve many of the water quality problems we face without creating huge increases in utility bills
  • Eliminates the annual operations and maintenance costs of dams

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Find the latest information and news about river restoration on social media using these hashtags: #FreeTheFoxRiver #UnDamTheFoxRiver