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Dane County to Acquire Additional Property Along Token Creek to Enhance “Suck the Muck” Initiative and Outdoor Recreation

January 17, 2019
Ariana Vruwink 608-267-8845
County Executive

Today, Dane County Executive Joe Parisi announced the acquisition of approximately 25 acres of property along Token Creek to complement Dane County’s “Suck the Muck” initiative and increase water access for outdoor recreation. Token Creek is the only cold water trout fishery in northeastern Dane County. This acquisition will allow the County to further its efforts to improve water quality, enhance stream habitat, and expand recreational opportunities for the public.


“Not only will this additional piece of land at Token Creek enhance our work to clean area lakes and streams, but it will also increase opportunities for outdoor recreation,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “By increasing access to Token Creek, more residents and visitors will be able to fish, hike, and enjoy Dane County’s beautiful natural resources.”


Token Creek is a 27 square mile watershed and provides nearly half of the base flow of water for Lake Mendota. The new parcel is located upstream of Dane County’s proposed “Suck the Muck” project for Token Creek. The protection of this property, including the creek and its surrounding land, helps ensure the long-term success of the County’s “Suck the Muck” initiative by reducing the likelihood of future sediment erosion and nutrient loading that can negatively impact water quality.


“Suck the Muck” is a $12 million initiative, introduced by Parisi in his 2017 County Budget and implemented by the County’s Department of Land and Water Resources, to clean up 33 total miles of streams that feed into the lakes. The sediment found in these streams is estimated to be at least 125 years old and contain 870,000 pounds of phosphorus, which can increase the frequency and extent of hazardous algae blooms. It is hoped that work from “Suck the Muck” will also improve the natural reproduction and diversity of fish populations.


The new parcel features wetlands, two ponds, and approximately 1,650 feet of meandering two bank frontage of Token Creek. Roughly 6 acres are made up of agricultural land, 5 acres are made up of woods, and nearly 2.5 acres include upland with improvements. This new segment adjoins 54 acres of land that were purchased by Dane County in 2017.


The purchase price for the approximately 25 acre parcel is $500,000. In addition to offering opportunities for water resource and habitat management, the new land will enhance the Token Creek County Park and Natural Resource Area Master Plan.


A resolution to acquire the property will be introduced at tonight’s County Board meeting and will be reviewed in the upcoming weeks.

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