a non-profit community-based advocacy group
 Our mission is to preserve and protect the natural resources and
 restore the cultural integrity of the Camp Coidwater area, and to  acquaint all people with the historic Birthplace of Minnesota.

Preserve Camp Coldwater Coalition requests immediate cessation of construction at the interchange of highways 55 and 62 in Hennepin County, Minnesota. This construction threatens the quantity and quality of underground water to Coldwater Spring, largest limestone bedrock spring in the Twin Cities flowing at 144,000 gallons a day.

This 10,000-year old spring is currently used as a public drinking water source, in Anishinabe (drinking) water ceremonies and in Dakota sweat lodges. The water is a constant 47-degrees Fahrenheit, ice-free in winter attracting ducks to the reservoir which empties down the Mississippi River gorge. The site is used for weekly pipe and prayer rites and as a place apart for meditation and contemplation. Camp Coldwater is on the National Register of Historic Places and is a declared sacred site by four federally recognized Native American tribes.

On 5/24/00, the Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR) voted to split jurisdiction of the area feeding the spring from the spring itself. Coldwater pring now lies within the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District (MCWD) boundary while the area feeding the spring lies within the Lower Minnesota River atershed District (LMRWD). This political rather than hydrologic boundary creates alarming loopholes in the protection of the spring. In the light of these oopholes we provide the following background information underlying our request for accountability.

MCWD hydrogeologic consultant Kelton Barr found that the stormwater pond in the 55/62 interchange could permanently divert one-third (48,000 gallons) or more of its baseline flow in his review of the Minnesota Department of Transportation s (MnDOT) operative plan (see attachment 2). The stormwater pond design would siphon water from the spring because it is lower, in elevation, than the outflow of Coldwater Spring. MGWD next sought a nationally recognized expert to peer review Barr s findings. Donald I. Siegel, PhD of Syracuse University, (report attachment 2 ) called Barr s findings "conservative." Commenting on the technical information from MnDOT Siegel states: "The fractures, pumping tests results, and water level measurements compellingly document a hydrologic connection between the interchange and the spring... .The groundwater model constructed to predict the effects of dewatering at the interchange could not be verified (experimentally shown to be correct). I also saw no indication of any sensitivity analysis to test the reliability of the initial calibration. Not including some sensitivity analysis is a major
omission and atypical of what is now required of groundwater modeling."

Mn DOT engineers disputed Siegel s findings but offered to change their design (10/03/00). On 10/18/00 MnDOT asked the LMRWD to approve Alternative 3 consisting of "some calculations" but no design. Without specifications, modeling studies and review we have no confidence that a new plan will protect the flow to the spring.

Our demands include:
I) A stop to construction of the 55/62 interchange until MnDOT can demonstrate that Coldwater Spring will not be harmed.
2) Consideration by MnDOT of plans to elevate the entire interchange or to allow the intersection to remain with traffic lights instead of building a cloverleaf.
3) Publication by MnDOT of any new plan, complete with specifications and supporting data.
4) Review of the plan and data by the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District (MCWD), the
Lower Minnesota River Watershed District (LMRWD), the Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources (BWSR), the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the Department of the Interior-National Park Service (DOI-NPS), the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP), the Federal Highway Administration (FHA), the Federal Transit Administration, the Mendota Mdewakanton Dakota Community, and Preserve Camp Coldwater Coalition. Invitations to comment on the plan sent to the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council (MIAC), the Lower Sioux Indian Community, the Prairie Island Indian Community, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community and the Upper Sioux Indian Community.
5) Opportunity for peer review of the findings by agencies, consultants and citizen experts including the cumulative affects of the road project on water quality and quantity. For example, could stormwater runoff and bird droppings from the pond contaminate the flow to Coldwater Spring?
6) A public comment period for interested parties to interface with public agencies charged with protection of water resources, historic sites and traditional cultural properties.
7) Concurrence by all regulating agencies that Coldwater Spring will suffer no harm from this construction project.
8) Acceptance by all responsible parties for their individual and collective responsibility and accountability should this project harm either the quantity or quality of the flow to historic Coldwater Spring.

No adverse impact on Coldwater Spring is acceptable. Preserve Camp Coldwater Coalition holds MnDOT accountable to provide clear, accurate and timely information to their supervising agencies and we hold those agencies accountable to honor their mission statements thus guaranteeing the preservation of Coldwater Spring.

We look forward to your prompt reply.

Preserve Camp Coldwater Coalition, email October 24, 2000

CC List

I. History
2. Minnehaha Creek Watershed District packet including Resolution Requesting Commitment to Protect Camp Coldwater Spring, Donald Siegel's report with CWD cover letter, Kelton Barr's report with MCWD cover letter
3. Draft excerpt of the minutes of the 10/18/00 Lower Minnesota River Watershed District meeting
Some packets also include:
4. Newsletter of Sacred Sites International Foundation
5. Birthplace of Minnesota pamphlet
6. Archeological Dig at Coldwater