LAND USE PLAN FOR THE
TOWN OF SPRING BROOK
DUNN COUNTY, WISCONSIN
The Plan Commission would like to thank all the citizens and public officials who assisted in developing this plan over the last three years. Without all their valuable input and help it could not have been accomplished.
Plan Commission Members
(Chairman) 2002 - present
Agriculture, Natural and Cultural Resources Committee
History of the Town of Spring Brook
The first evidence of human habitation
Indians also dispersed several plants. The Menomonie spread wild rice wherever they
passed. Many of today’s highways
were originally roads between native habitations. By the time of European
settlement, the region now known as
The French coureurs de bois (woods
rovers) hunted along the Red Cedar and the Chippewa. Pierre Le Sueur offers the first mention of
the Red Cedar, "another river of great length." Jean Baptiste Perreault established trading posts on the Red Cedar. In 1822 Perkins built the first sawmill there,
and by 1829 lumbering was underway.
Knapp, Stout, and Company, which began in 1846, became one of
the largest lumbering operations in the world.
Knapp, Stout owned over one-half million acres of pine land,
most of it in the
The Dunn County Pinery Rifles,
later Company K, contributed significantly to the Union victory in the
Civil War. Company K fought in
the Peninsular Campaign, Second Bull Run,
In the twentieth century nearly 200
men and women from
The first town law was enacted to stop hogs from running
loose. The fine was $5. On
The early settlers found the land to
be "well-timbered," filled with animals, including wolves. One early account describes the region as "heavily
overgrown with oak and populated by bear, wolves, prairie chickens,
and a tribe of Ojibwas at nearby
A post office was located in the Amy settlement and a Baptist church was organized in the locality.
Rumsey's Landing was a steamboat landing on the north bank of the Chippewa. Besides a ferry, there was an elevator and a grain warehouse.
Waneka settlement was located on Muddy Creek, in the northern
part of the town. In 1852 B.
Fowler built a hostelry and a stage station.
The stage lost importance after the railroads arrived. Waneka and
In 1856 the
The Salem United Methodist Church of Iron Creek began in 1860. It merged with United Methodist in 1868.
The German Methodist Episcopal Church was established in 1864. The First Quarterly Conference was held in the home of John Quirling (now spelled Quilling) of Spring Brook.
In 1871 the Reverend Amund Johnson organized Spring Brook Evangelical Lutheran Congregation at old Meridean. In 1875 the first church was built at Meridean. A new and larger church was constructed in 1889.
In 1902 the Evangelical Lutheran St. John's Society (German) was established.
The Spring Brook Norwegian Lutheran Congregation was established in March, 1917 and a church was built two miles northwest of Caryville.
Amy Chapel, now non-denominational, was built by the Free Will Baptists.
Spring Brook Geography and Topography
The central area of the Town of Spring Brook contains
broad, mostly flat farm fields. Slightly
rolling wooded hills can be found on the eastern and western edges of
Curtiss-Wedge, F., Jones, Geo. O. & Others. History of Dunn
Jr. and Co., 1925.
Lynch, Larry and Russell, John M. eds. Where the Wild Rice
Grows: A Sesquicentennial Portrait of Menomonie.
Menomonie Sesquicentennial Commission, 1996.
O'Brien, P.M. Spring Brook Saga: The Settlement and
Growth of Eastern
Printing Professionals and publishers, 1994.
Background and Authority
Act 9, commonly recognized as
62.23 enables the town to exercise village powers. On
State law requires
a Plan Commission to draft and recommend adoption of a comprehensive
As per a state mandate all units of government must
comply with the Wisconsin Uniform Dwelling Code (UDC). On
Land Use Planning Process
It was the responsibility of the Plan Commission to learn about past community changes, changes likely to occur in the future, and community likes and dislikes and to define what residents want the community to become. The Plan Commission studied supporting information and evaluated Township needs. Community participation in this process included surveys, visioning sessions, newsletters and open houses. The Plan Commission is charged with the responsibility for making recommendations to the Town Board to ensure that implementation of the plan is consistent with its goals and objectives. Based on its findings, this plan makes recommendations to the Town Board regarding appropriate actions necessary to address protecting/preserving valuable Township characteristics for a twenty year planning period.
Recommendations in the comprehensive plan are long range and it is important to understand that some of them may not be implemented for a number of years. It is possible that some recommendations may never be implemented. Consequently, recommendations to create local ordinances need not be drafted and implemented immediately. The same holds true with respect to county zoning. Currently the Town is not pursuing becoming a zoned Township. However, if at some point in the future the Town would want to become zoned, the Implementation Element outlines this process. If the Town were ever to become zoned, existing county-zoning districts may not need to be immediately changed to reflect the town’s comprehensive plan. However, if the town were to become locally zoned, the town would need to draft its basic zones and could make changes to zoning districts to reflect the town’s comprehensive plan as needed. All recommendations, goals, objectives, and changes should be made incrementally.
Comprehensive Plan Objectives
Development has existed in the town since its inception, but it has only been in the last 10-20 years that these pressures have become an issue within the Township. Development pressures have reached the point where residents believe that the town will risk losing its rural character without planning in place.
The purpose of the plan is to provide information about the Town, its resources, its residents, and its existing character. The plan also addresses community concerns about what the community wants to be in the future and describes how it intends to get there. The Town Board and Plan Commission will use the plan to make decisions about future growth and development.
The plan is organized around nine planning elements: Issues and Opportunities; Housing; Transportation; Agriculture, Natural and Cultural Resources; Utilities and Community Facilities; Economic Development; Land Use; Intergovernmental Cooperation; and Implementation. The elements can be found in Part II of this document. Following are general overviews and an analysis framework addressing the nine planning elements and general overviews.
Issues and Opportunities
Provides demographic information and identifies development trends by identifying key issues and opportunities, researches selected trends in the local economy and demographics, and generates population projections.
Provides basic information on housing stock in the community, analyzes trends, projects the number of households to be added over the next twenty years, identifies potential problems and opportunities associated with accommodating varied housing needs, and reviews State and Federal housing programs.
Provides basic information about existing transportation networks in and around the township. It assesses existing transportation facilities, reviews statewide planning efforts, develops a long-term transportation plan, and develops goals and objectives.
Agriculture, Natural and Cultural Resources
Collects agricultural information on the variety of agricultural resources and programs in the area. It develops maps of important agricultural resources such as productive soils, topography, land cover, and water features. It identifies areas of significant agriculture and areas of non-agricultural importance.
Provides basic information on a variety of natural and cultural resources in the area, and develops maps of significant and/or environmentally sensitive areas such as productive soils, topography, land cover, and water features.
Utilities and Community Facilities
Provides information on facilities and services such as solid waste management, sewer and water, recreational areas and schools. It also identifies public facilities and services that need to be expanded. This baseline information can then be used to provide direction for utility, facility, and service growth as the population increases in the future.
Provides basic economic information about the Township by analyzing the economic base of the community and statewide trends affecting the community and region. It identifies desirable businesses and economic development programs at the local and state level and assesses the community’s strengths and weaknesses relative to attracting and retaining economic growth.
Reveals the importance and relationships of land uses by preparing an existing land use map, identifying contaminated sites, assessing real estate forces, identifying conflicts, developing 20-year projections, and preparing a future land use map.
Assesses the Township’s role and function in joint planning and decisions with surrounding jurisdictions. It analyzes the relationship with local, regional and state jurisdictions, compiles existing cooperative agreements, identifies potential conflicts, and develops a process to resolve conflicts within its bounds and between itself and other communities.
Describes specific actions and sequences to implement the integration of the above elements. It develops a process to measure progress and develops a format for updating the plan.
Community Involvement and Input
The development and implementation of a successful land use and development plan, and the creation of policies and management tools are based largely on community involvement. Planners involve the community by gathering public input, educating the public, and fostering a sense of ownership of the plan.
The purpose of this section is to review the community involvement activities and summarize input obtained during the planning process.
- At the April 2002 annual meeting Village Powers were adopted.
- In March, 2003 the 1st landowner survey was mailed.
- On March 22 and again on April 2 of 2003, two visioning sessions were hosted by the town and facilitated by UW Extension educator.
- In August, 2004 a 2nd landowner survey was mailed.
- In April of 2005, a newsletter was sent out to township landowners informing them of plan progress.
Visioning and survey results can be found in Appendix B.
Summary of Citizen Opinion Survey
The Plan Commission used the survey information to guide the formation of the Comprehensive Plan. The following paragraphs represent the feeling of the township residents with regards to residential need and land use.
The responses to the survey questions and comments made at the visioning sessions indicate that people of the Town are concerned that the Town may lose its rural character. They support the idea of preserving farms and farmland, particularly prime farmland. Most citizens do not find the noise, dust, and odors of farming difficult to live with, and they enjoy the open space, woodlands, and wildlife habitat. The vast majority are willing to support land use policies and regulations designed to preserve the rural and agricultural nature of the Town, within reason.
A goal is a long-term end toward which programs or activities are ultimately directed, but might never be attained. The goal represents a general statement that outlines the most preferable situation that could possibly be achieved if all the objectives and policies were implemented. According to survey results, the following list of goals are the Town’s desired destination: