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Iowa City to Hold Open House for Iowa River "Whitewater Project"

IOWA CITY, Iowa (CBS2/Fox28) -- City leaders in Iowa City have big plans for the Iowa River. Officials are holding an open house Monday to give the public a sneak peak at the “Whitewater Project”.

The plan looks to remove the Burlington Street Dam, a roller dam that has proven dangerous.  “There is a safety concern. I mean, if you go over that, there's a good chance you won't come out,” said Eric Wortman, member of the Hawkeye Community Rowing Club.

Wortman says rowers stay far away from the dam, which is not only unsafe, but it also creates a roadblock for anyone looking to paddle downstream. By removing the Burlington Street Dam, city leaders hope to open the river up to recreational kayaking and tubing.

“I think it's a wonderful thing; I’d like to see it happen, as long as they can preserve this section at a row-able level,” said Wortman.

Wortman hopes removing the dam won’t lead to rougher waters or sand bars where Hawkeye rowing teams and clubs count on flat waters.

The open house meeting will take place at 6:30pm at the Robert A. Lee Recreation Center in Iowa City.
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