It’s not often that we are faced with a public policy controversy that presents us with an obvious solution that is both the most financially responsible and environmentally friendly choice.
But that’s exactly what we have with the removal of the Estabrook Dam.
Milwaukee County owns the dam, but maintaining it affects all of our institutions.
The dam is nonfunctioning, an eyesore, expensive to maintain and damaging to the health to the river.
Repairing the dam would cost the county at least $2.2 million — close to $3.4 million if the dam were altered to accommodate fish passage — and upward of $160,000 to operate each year.
It would cost only $1.7 million to remove the dam. That means repairing the dam would likely cost twice as much as removing it.