The mayor, the director of the DNR, and a whole lot of other people are talking about it...Restore The Rapids.

But, is it a good idea?

Grand Rapids Mayor George Heartwell showed his enthusiasm for the project recently.  Governor Rick Snyder and Michigan DNR director Keith Creagh did too.

Grand Rapids Whitewater is the group behind the charge to restore the rapids.  On their Facebook page, they describe themselves as:

A group of individuals, paddling clubs, fishermen and businesses dedicated to helping Green Grand Rapids achieve the dream of putting rapids back in the Grand for everyone’s enjoyment.

Why not restore the rapids?

MONEY

  • It will cost $27 million to restore the rapids.  Opponents don't like the costs.  Supporters say the cost will be covered by federal and state grants, plus donations from various organizations.

ENVIRONMENT

RECREATION

  • Some fisherman and rowers say the rapids with hurt their sports.  Others say it will improve them.

The impact on the environment looks to be positive, according to the DNR.  Costs should be low, if private funding and sponsorship come as expected.  If both of these continue to hold true, why not restore the rapids?

Creating another draw to Grand Rapids that should have a positive social, environmental, and economic impact seems like a win-win-win.  Plus...it looks like fun!