The House Committee
on Natural Resources has approved legislation introduced by U.S. Rep. Pete
Visclosky, D-1st, which would designate the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
as a National Park.
On Wednesday the
Committee approved the legislation, H.R. 1488, the Indiana Dunes National
Park Act, by unanimous consent. The measure is now referred to the full
House and is expected to be considered in the coming months.
1488 would retitle the “Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore” as the “Indiana
Dunes National Park.” That designation would create the first National Park
in Indiana and the 60th in the U.S.
The initial effort
to name this area a National Park began in 1916 under the first Director of
the National Park Service, Stephen Mather. “The National Park designation
would provide greater recognition of this august Northwest Indiana
attraction with the intent of drawing more visitors to the region and
stimulating the local economy,” according to a statement released by
Visclosky’s office on Wednesday.
bipartisan companion measure has been introduced in the Senate by Sen. Joe
Donnelly, D-Indiana. This measure, co-sponsored by Sen. Todd Young,
R-Indiana, is currently pending consideration in the Senate Committee on
Energy and Natural Resources.
“I thank Chairman
Rob Bishop, Ranking Member Raul Grijalva, and all the members of the Natural
Resources Committee, for their leadership to bring forward and advance this
legislation,” Visclosky said. “I hope that the full House considers this
important legislation as soon as possible so that we can quickly begin to
harness this national recognition of the Indiana Dunes and attract new
visitors and economic activity to our region.”
“The Indiana Dunes
is one of the most beautiful natural resources in our state and our region,
and I am hopeful the full House of Representatives will quickly pass this
legislation now that it has advanced from the Committee,” Donnelly said.
“Designating the Dunes as a National Park would give the area the
recognition it deserves, attract more visitors, and further stimulate the
“I appreciate Rep.
Visclosky and his House colleagues for acting on this bill,” Young said.
“Many Hoosier families have fond memories of times spent together at the
Indiana Dunes. Changing its designation to a National Park will give
families who live outside our great state the opportunity to know about, and
enjoy, one of Indiana’s most beautiful places.”
“The Indiana Dunes
National Lakeshore is a treasured source of natural beauty and outdoor
recreation for not just Hoosier families but all Americans,” said U.S. Rep.
Jackie Walorski, D-2nd. “Making it the first National Park in Indiana will
strengthen our state’s economy by drawing more tourists from around the
country and boosting the outdoor recreation industry that is so vital to our
region. I look forward to voting for this bipartisan bill on the House