Goose Lake Water Quality Improvement Project

In late 2023, Valley Branch Watershed District (VBWD) received a $150,000 Clean Water Fund (CWF) grant for the Goose Lake Water Quality Improvement project. This project was identified and prioritized by VBWD after years of water quality monitoring of the lake and its contributing watershed. The project will de-list the lake from the MPCA’s impaired water’s list by reducing internal phosphorus concentrations.

Goose Lake is located north and south of 10th Street North (CSAH 10) and west of Keats Avenue (CSAH 19) in Lake Elmo near the Lake Elmo Park Reserve. A split alum (aluminum sulfate and sodium aluminate) application will be applied to both lobes of the lake in 2024 and 2026. This will mitigate the internal release of phosphorus, reducing phosphorus concentrations below the 60 µg/L standard.

Water quality data was collected from 2011 through 2020 in Goose Lake. Sediment cores were collected in 2020 to determine sediment phosphorus release rates. A water quality model was developed to analyze pollutant loading from the watershed and the internal phosphorus loading to Goose Lake. This water quality model evaluated best management practices for water quality improvements to bring Goose Lake to the water quality standards. Due to the high internal phosphorus loading, an alum treatment was identified as the most const effective solution for Goose Lake to meet water quality standards. 

In late 2022, the VBWD held two neighborhood meetings regarding shallow lakes and management options and expected outcomes at Goose Lake. Information presented at those meetings is here: Goose Lake Neighborhood Meetings (

Grant funding was awarded to the project for the split alum application. The VBWD will provide a $50,000 match towards the application, engineering, and oversight for the two applications. The first application is slated for the fall of 2024 while the second application will occur in the spring of 2026.

Figure for Grant App

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