ST. PAUL, Minn. - The city of St. Paul is negotiating with contractors to remove a huge log jam off Raspberry Island that could eventually become a threat to public safety.
Trees and debris dropped by recent summer storms ended up in the Mississippi River and, pushed by high water and fast river currents, are accumulating in a growing mountain near theentrance to the St. PaulYacht Club.
St. Paul Parks and Recreation Public Service Manager Brad Meyer says the city decided to step in when the log jam started becoming a public safety issue. He says while the pileup is not yet impacting the navigable channel of the river, it is becoming an increasing threat to boats docked in the St. Paul Yacht club.
Meyer says negotiations with potential contractors are moving ahead quickly, and that work on breaking up and removing the log jam could begin before the busy holiday weekend.
"It's in the best interest of public safety to do it now," he said.
The Army Corps of Engineers is also involved in the discussion as the Mississippi River is a national waterway.
There are concerns over the cost of the project and officials from the St. Paul Yacht club have said they can't afford it. Meyer tells KARE 11 that cost will not be an obstacle as the growing log jam is a public safety issue and that the yacht club can help in other ways like moving boats and docks.