Press Release: Gov. Evers Announces Native Shoreline Restoration Project Moving Forward at the Executive Residence

Office of Governor Tony Evers
Gov. Evers Announces Native Shoreline Restoration Project Moving Forward at the Executive Residence
Stalled project receives new push to support water quality improvements on Lake Mendota 
MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers today announced the Executive Residence will be moving forward on a project to restore the property’s natural shoreline along Lake Mendota by planting native flowers, grasses, shrubs, and trees to provide erosion control, prevent runoff, enhance the wildlife habitat, and support pollinators. Phase one of the project received final approval from the State Capitol and Executive Residence Board (SCERB) yesterday, which has been developed to serve as a model for other lakeshore owners throughout the state and to improve water quality in the Yahara Watershed. 

“This project has been in the works for more than a decade and we are glad to be moving forward on this important project for the health of the lake, the wildlife, and the community,” said Gov. Evers. “By planting native plants along the shoreline, we will help improve water quality and wildlife habitats, especially for native pollinators, and we hope this project will serve as a model for other folks along not only the Lake Mendota shoreline but shorelines across the state. Projects like this can help improve our state’s resilience and sustainability for the future, and I want to thank the many partners and advocates who have been working on this project for years.”

The project was first approved by SCERB in 2011 but ultimately stalled. In February 2019, SCERB approved the restoration project to move forward under its previous approval. Preliminary plans are currently in the works for Phase 1 of 2, which includes plantings on the full length of the shoreline by Fall 2022. The second phase of the planting is planned for 2023.

Several environmental groups have been advocating for this project for more than a decade, including the Clean Lakes Alliance, Yahara WINS, the Rock River Coalition, Jefferson County Land and Water Conservation Department, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Extension Lakes, Dane County Land and Water Resource Department, and Resource Environmental Solutions. The project will be privately funded with some assistance from the Wisconsin Executive Residence Foundation (WERF), plants will be donated, and volunteers will do the planting.
An online version of this release is available here.