Levee Park

2017 State Bonding Bill

In May of 2017, the State legislature passed, and the Governor signed, the 2017 State Bonding Bill. The Bill contained over $19 million in state funding for two regionally significant Red Wing community improvement projects. $14.762 million of the funding is dedicated to the construction of an overpass over the Canadian Pacific Railway’s main line at Sturgeon Lake Road. The balance of the funding, $4.4 million, provides full funding for Phase II of the River Town Renaissance project.

Phase II Projects

The Phase II projects include the Levee Park dockage with park and promenade improvements and the completion of the Vogel Harbor bulkhead wall replacement. Phase II also includes part of the bonding funding that was dedicated to the 2018 renewal and renovation project of the Sheldon Theatre.

Boat Dockage Concerns

Adequate boat dockage and general improvements to the levee wall area and the promenade at Levee Park have been a concern for over 25 years. Improvements are also needed for traffic and pedestrian circulation--this is especially true when large riverboats dock at Levee Park July through October during the riverboat season.   After completion, two large riverboats will be able to dock at the Levee at the same time with ease.

Planning & Design

With the final project funding appropriated in the 2017 State Bonding Bill, the Project Management Team and Kimley-Horn, our consulting engineers, completed the limited scope professional services contract that was initiated in 2017.  The scope was to develop and seek public and regulatory input into alternative designs.  Through 2017, multiple stakeholder groups were engaged, concluding with an open house to present the draft plans to the public.  An agency review (federal and state regulatory approval process, permitting, etc.) of the three most popular alternative project designs was completed.  

In addition to the project budget, a driving factor in the design development was the regulatory requirement not to intrude within the navigation channel with any structure or dockage.  The navigation channel, on the Minnesota side in Levee Park, begins at the levee wall. 

The Project Management Team worked through various complicated issues and collaborated with multiple City Boards, Commissions, stakeholders groups, and the public during the design development of the project over the past few years.  We understand that a project of this magnitude will be a long-lasting legacy project for the citizens of the city well into the future and we valued everyone’s input.

The final design took into consideration all the input gathered during the public engagement process.  The entire frontage of the waterfront will be made available for riverboat dockage, allowing two large riverboats to dock with ease at the same time.  An approximate 12-foot Riverfront Promenade with a 20-foot amenity zone to the ‘notch’ is proposed.  The amenity zone will have pre-determined zones (colored concrete) where trucks that service the riverboats could back up to the Promenade.  Two ADA accessible routes into the main park will be established.  Colored concrete will designate the Promenade pedestrian crossings into the park. 

Ikata Drive will remain, with new curbing on the park side.  Half of the drive will be asphalt and half will be concrete.  Ikata Drive is currently a “multi-modal” (vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians) roadway and will continue to service vehicles, bicycles, and pedestrians. 

The split road surface will serve as a calming traffic measure to which all users--vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrian--will need to adapt.  With the placement of pilasters and lighting pylons, we want to discourage vehicle drivers from driving and parking upon the grass surfaces.  With the high water table, vehicles that drive park upon the grass eventually rut and destroy the sodded areas causing extra city maintenance.  Parking on the north side (river side) of Ikata Drive will be discouraged.     

In the future, the asphalt section will serve as a portion of the Mississippi Blufflands State Trail along the riverfront to Colvill Park and eventually to Lake City.     

An enhancement of the sheet pile wall is proposed to allow the relocation of the existing floating dock, outside the navigation channel.  The circulation of vehicles and pedestrians will be enhanced, as will security to the riverfront when large boats are docked.  We will also coordinate and complete the repair for three stormwater sewer tunnels that outfall into the River with this project. 

Please click on the select Plan Sheets of the project and conceptual graphics files for a general visual representation of the project in the upper right corner of this page.


The full budget for the project is approximately $8.1 million.  Budget funding sources include state bonding funding and grants in the amount of $5.65 million from the Minnesota Department of Transportation Port Development Assistance Program, $575,200 of City funding, $1.75 million of Storm Water and Water Utility funding, a $148,000 transfer from Phase I for land costs, and $14,000 in miscellaneous funding.  


Contact the Project Manager – Ron Seymour at ron.seymour@ci.red-wing.mn.us or 651-385-5193.