MEMPHIS, TN - The U.S. Corps of Engineers is taking a new look at the Mississippi River.
Long managed for flood control and navigation, a new study of the river will look at things like preserving habitat for wildlife and access to the river for recreation.
Officials say the two-year, $500,000 study reflects a newfound appreciation for the river, which is one of the most productive freshwater ecosystems in the world.
The study will look at 954 miles of river, from the mouth of the Ohio to the Gulf of Mexico, as well as 2.7 million acres of floodplain.
The study could lead to improved public access to the river and the restoration of side channels that are vital to fish and wildlife.