Ann Arbor picks 'Argo Cascades' as name for $1.17M Huron River kayak feature
The city of Ann Arbor has officially named the new series of drop pools near the Argo Canoe Livery on the Huron River the "Argo Cascades."
More than 500 people took an online survey last week to help the parks department name the new recreation amenity, city officials said.
Crews recently completed reconstruction of the bypass channel around Argo Dam in the old Argo millrace. For the first time since 1830 — when the channel was built to power mills — the small section of river will be free-flowing with the portage removed and transformed into a series of nine drops and pools for people in tubes, rafts, canoes and kayaks to enjoy.
Courtesy of city of Ann Arbor
The section of river and trail located just north of downtown Ann Arbor and east of Main Street already is a major recreation destination, but city officials expect it will be even more popular now. AnnArbor.com has fielded inquiries from as far as Windsor from people interested in checking out the new features.
Additional construction is expected to continue over the next eight weeks, including replacement of the bridge over the entry to the Argo Cascades in early March.
This will include inserting a stop log to prevent the flow of water through the Argo Cascades and will result in its closure until about mid-April, city officials said.
Pedestrians will not have access to the area at that time and will be asked to use an alternate route until the new bridge is installed and the path has reopened, city officials said. Detour signs will be installed on site to help direct people around the area.
After installation of the new bridge, city officials said the stop log will be removed to allow for water flow through the Argo Cascades again.
The city will complete final adjustments to water flow through the Argo Cascades at that time, followed by asphalt paving of the Border-to-Border trail.
City officials said further updates will follow in the coming week, including information about a grand opening celebration.
Mayor John Hieftje said recently there is talk about transforming the old MichCon site on the south side of the Huron River near the new amenity into a riverfront park. He said that could happen as soon as DTE Energy is finished with environmental cleanup work in the area.
Two whitewater features in the Huron River, just downstream from the Argo Cascades, are expected to come later this year. DTE has agreed to pay for them since the area is adjacent to DTE's property along the river and the company has to do remediation work there anyway.
Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for AnnArbor.com. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.