Lawson Canal

The project will transform the former Banta and Gilbert Mill sites, a 14-acre Brownfield, into a vibrant mixed-use waterfront neighborhood and recreational destination, attracting a group of users from kids to paddle sports  enthusiasts, bird watchers, fishermen, walkers and bicyclists. It will serve as a linchpin connecting the Loop the Lake Trail to High Cliff State Park. The project is consistent with the comments of Professor Alex Krieger, waterfront expert, who during a site visit in 2015 stated: “Waterfronts make cities competitive. They are changing from the back production area of cities to the front yard.”

It will convert a channel into a natural river section including a series of small waterfalls and pools. With related trail, public realm, and infrastructure improvements, the “Canal Corridor” will attract new housing, retail, services, eating, dining and related businesses. The City is also preserving historical and ecologically important aspects of the site.

Project Goals:
  • Create a Unique Public Outdoor Amenity
  • Support and Encourage Economic Redevelopment
  • Naturalize the Lawson Canal
  • Maximize Public Access

2021 Slideshow Presentation
Community Survey Results Lawson Canal 2021
Final Concept Plan 2021
Project Components:
  1. Recreational Water Course
  2. Aquatic habitat and water quality improvements
  3. Goby barrier
  4. Oak Street extension
  5. Bridge over Lawson Canal
  6. Canal walk
  7. Gateway plaza
  8. Multi-use trail network
  9. Historical signage
  10. Trailhead
  11. Wildlife viewing areas
  12. Public art plaza
  13. Enhanced public fishing
  14. Pedestrian bridge