Welcome to the Fox River Navigational System Authority
The Fox River Navigational System Authority (FRNSA) manages the 17 locks on the Fox River. Of the 17 locks, 16 have been restored to full working order and are a recreational, historic, and economic asset to northeast Wisconsin. The lock at Rapide Croche near Wrightstown will remain closed as a barrier to invasive aquatic species.
Under State of Wisconsin management
The lock system was transferred from the Army Corps of Engineers to the State of Wisconsin in 2004. This transfer was completed by a state statute that established the FRNSA and specified operational duties. As specified in Chapter 237 of Wisconsin State Statutes, the Authority’s primary mission is to repair, rehabilitate, operate and maintain the locks system. For more information, download Chapter 237 here.
Local board of directors runs the locks
In 1984 the Army Corps of Engineers announced it would abandon the system of 17 locks. Individual citizens who were passionate about the impact of the lock system organized and worked with state and federal elected officials to create the Authority. Today the Fox River Navigational System Authority functions as an independent state authority with a nine-member board of directors appointed by the Governor. The board includes two members each from Brown, Outagamie and Winnebago counties; and three representatives one from the Department of Natural Resources, one from the Department of Transportation and one from the State Historical Society. The Authority leases the lock system from the state of Wisconsin.
Economic development of lock system
A feasibility study examined the potential for economic development along the Fox River corridor. This study focused on waterfront opportunities, tourism, and development of heritage centers. For more information, download the Fox River Corridor Economic Development Feasibility Study.