Dayton Water Trail Project


The City of Dayton is working with MSA Professional Services to develop a designated water route intended to be used by canoes and kayaks. Water trails allow users of ranging abilities the option to access the water safely by providing ADA compliant access points and assures users of a path to follow that will bring them back to key access points on and off the trail.

The planning effort will provide a vision, action plan, and funding options for development of a water trail that allows users of ranging abilities safe access to the water and connects paddlers to businesses for food/drink, rentals, sporting gear, etc. in Dayton. The four bodies of water we are considering for part of the trail include:

  • Mississippi River
  • Crow River
  • Diamond Lake
  • French Lake

This project will both expand recreation opportunities in Dayton and positively impact the local economy. With more people spending time outdoors, and opportunities for recreation being an important factor when people make decisions about where to live, now is the right time to start building momentum on these efforts.

2024 Update

The City of Dayton is waiting to confirm the award of $850,000 of Federal funding.  Our original ask was $3,099,000 to install the complete project in 2024.  With the curtailed funding, we are still able to construct an ADA complaint boat launch at Elsie Stephens Park.

Staff is also working with the DNR to assess the feasibility of a partnership to incorporate an ADA complaint boat launch at the existing DNR landing at the confluence of the Mississippi and Crow Rivers in the Historic Village.  This would allow a put in point in the Historic Village and take out at Elsie Stephens Park.  Staff is working with MSA on plans and specifications for bidding in the Spring.  Construction in the Summer with anticipated substantial completion by Fall of 2024.

Please visit our project website for more information.

water trail