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MOUNT PLEASANT, WI – The American Transmission Company (ATC) is working with Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network (WIN) to help restore a portion of the Lamparek Ditch, a critical tributary of the impaired north branch of the Pike River in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin. Restoration efforts along this historically degraded riparian corridor will aim to promote regional clean water and ecosystem goals.
ATC will provide funds to purchase and plant native vegetation along a new 1.2-mile transmission line corridor between County Trunk Highway (CTH) H and 90th Street, pictured below. Enhanced seeding and plantings of native, floristically diverse vegetation will help reduce runoff of pollutants, create wildlife habitat, and increase floodwater storage capacity for the watershed.
“ATC understands ‘win-win’ and sets a great example for corporate environmental stewardship,” said Dave Giordano, Executive Director of Root-Pike WIN. “They listened to the needs in our Pike River Watershed Restoration Plan and quickly stepped up with a much richer – and more expensive – planting plan. Having a native plant mix with greater diversity translates into reduced sheet runoff, better groundwater infiltration, improved habitat for pollinators, and a richer environmental connection point to the North Branch. These corridors are essential to the current and future health of the rapidly-developing “Wisconn Valley” watersheds.”
The diverse seeding and planting will include a mixture of more than 50 species of tallgrass prairie, wet prairie, sedge meadow, and submergent aquatic species. Vegetation will include an abundance of flowering plants with bloom times scattered throughout the year to support pollinators during their active seasons. The corridor will be approximately 320-feet wide.
Claude Lois, Project Director for the Village of Mount Pleasant commented, “The Village of Mount Pleasant works vigorously with our community partners to protect and enhance our environmental assets. We are pleased to be working with community partners to explore ways to rehabilitate and improve the water quality and natural habitat of the Lamparek Ditch as part of the new development in that area.”
In total, ATC has committed to restoring 46 acres of a previously dominated agricultural setting to native vegetation – 30 acres of new transmission line right-of-way and 16 acres of new substation property along the North side of the tributary. ATC will monitor and maintain the planted areas through 2020. To keep the restored areas resilient long-term, Root-Pike WIN and ATC will seek additional partnerships with other stakeholders along the newly created and enhanced green space corridor.
American Transmission Co. is a Wisconsin-based company that owns and operates the electric transmission system in portions of the Upper Midwest. Formed in 2001 as the nation’s first multi-state transmission-only utility, ATC has invested to improve the adequacy and reliability of its infrastructure. ATC now has $5 billion in assets, including more than 9,890 miles of transmission lines and 568 substations. The company is a member of the MISO regional transmission organization, and provides nondiscriminatory service to all customers, supporting effective competition in energy markets without favoring any market participant. For more information, visit our website at www.atcllc.com.
Root-Pike Watershed Initiative Network Inc. is a Racine, WI based 501(c)3 non-profit that restores, protects and sustains the Root-Pike basin by building partnerships, finding funding, and managing projects to advance the goals of stakeholder-driven watershed restoration plans in the Root-Pike basin. The Root-Pike basin includes the Pike River, Root River, Oak Creek, Pike Creek and the Wind Point watersheds – some of most impaired Lake Michigan tributaries in the state of Wisconsin. Root-Pike WIN’s goal is to create places where people want to be by restoring lands that are critical to clean water. Root-Pike WIN has also created the Pollinator Patch Program aimed at restoring habitat for threatened and endangered pollinator species. For more information, visit our website at http://www.rootpikewin.org.