UMRR Program - Rice Lake Complex HREP - LaGrange Pool

Rock Island District
Published Oct. 1, 2021
Rice Lake Complex

Rice Lake Complex


LaGrange Pool, Illinois Waterway River Miles 138.0 - 132.0, Fulton County, Illinois.


Rice Lake is a 6,800-acre backwater complex located 24 miles southwest of Peoria, Illinois, in Fulton County on the right descending bank of the Illinois Waterway between river miles 138.0 to 132.0. The project lands are state owned and are managed by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (ILDNR) as a fish and wildlife area.

The project goals are to enhance and restore wetland and aquatic habitat. The objectives identified to meet these goals are (1) Increase the areal coverage of annual emergent and moist soil vegetation in Big and Goose Lakes during the summer growing season; (2) Decrease summer water levels to below EL 440 in Big Lake, Goose Lake and Rice Lake to promote vegetation growth during the summer growing season; (3) Increase connectivity between Big and Goose Lakes and the Illinois River during summer drawdowns to reduce fish mortality and avian botulism; and (4) Increase areal coverage of floodplain forest and wetland vegetation on Duck Island agricultural fields to provide scarce habitat for wildlife.

Project Features:

  • Spillway access road
  • Installing a pump station will increase reliability and flexibility of water level management
  • A water discharge channel from the pump station
  • Water control structures
  • Overflow and natural spillway embankment
  • A reinforced concrete outlet structure
  • Riprap erosion protection
  • Mast tree/native grass planting on Duck Island

The project will provide increase water management flexibility and the capability to optimize the quality of quantity of aquatic, wetland and floodplain habitat within the refuge area.


Increased flood and sedimentation levels resulted in degradation of what has historically acted as excellent mid-migration waterfowl and aquatic habitat. The lack of reliable and flexible water management capability over half of the project area severely limited its effectiveness in providing feeding and resting habitat for the 2.7 million annual waterfowl use days. Habitat degradation also negatively affected the other migratory and resident species using the facility.


The construction contract was awarded in September of 2011 and construction began in 2012. Spring flooding in 2013 delayed construction and caused some damages that required contract modifications. The project was near completion when a record flood occurred in summer of 2015, delaying completion of final construction punch list elements. Pump repairs were completed in July 2017. Pump #2 performed approximately 60 hours that fall, then was rendered inoperable. Since then, the pump has been pulled, rebuilt and reinstalled. In October 2018, all three pumps at the pump station shut down. A service contract was awarded in September 2020 to repair the three pumps and installation and testing occurred in April 2021.  The Operation and Maintenance (O&M) manual is being updated and the project will be turned over to the sponsor in 2022.

Additional Information


CG - Construction General

Summarized Project Costs

Estimated Federal Cost

$ 13,459,763

Estimated Non-Federal Cost

$ 7,280,000

Estimated Total Project Cost

$ 20,739,763

Allocations Prior to FY 2022

$ 13,302,231

FY 2021 Allocation

$ 200,000

FY 2022 Allocation


FY 2022 President’s Budget

$ 0

FY 2022 Total Capability

$ 0


Major Work Item Prior Fiscal Year

FY 2021: Funds were used to test, repair and reinstall the pumps at the pump station.

Major Work Item Current Year

FY 2022: On hand funds will be used to complete the operation and maintenance (O&M) manual and turn the project over to the sponsor.