Scanlon dam gets a facelift

At the century mark, it's a first


July 28, 2023

Jana Peterson

Work is ongoing this summer on replacing gates that hold back water near the Scanlon hydroelectric power dam run by Minnesota Power. The dam, built in 1923, is getting its first major overhaul since it was first installed.

Crossing the St. Louis River on Minnesota Highway 61 in Scanlon offers a glimpse of a construction crane and a handful of workers crawling over one of the neighborhood dams.

Even in the rain, the marine contractors from J.F. Brennan can be seen wearing yellow slickers.

They've been working on a $3 million Minnesota Power project since May. It's aimed at replacing seven of eight gates on what is the east channel dam, built 100 years ago.

"Hydro dams are long-lasting, forever assets," said Nora Rosemore from atop the operators' deck of the dam. "If you keep it up, this dam could be here fo...

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