Houghton Lake

Project Details


Houghton Lake Improvement Board


Lake Township, MI
Roscommon Township, MI
Markey Township, MI
Denton Township, MI
Roscommon County, MI


20,044 acres


$750,000 annually



Houghton Lake is Michigan’s largest inland lake. However, despite its large size, the lake is shallow with an average depth of less than 9 feet. Houghton Lake has long been known for its exceptional fishery and as a prime resort and vacation destination. Historically, Houghton Lake supported a healthy and diverse aquatic plant community, but in the late 1990’s, the exotic invasive plant Eurasian milfoil was found in the lake. By 2001, Eurasian milfoil infested over 10,000 acres of the lake and seriously impacted recreational use and enjoyment of the lake. To address this problem, the Houghton Lake Improvement Board was established and a comprehensive lake management plan was developed.

Progressive AE worked closely with the Houghton Lake Improvement Board, university researchers, and state and federal agencies to coordinate implementation of the plan and to acquire scientific data to facilitate lake management decision-making. As part of the plan, an informational web site was created to keep residents informed of project activities and reports.

Visit www.houghtonlakeboard.org and download our Houghton Lake: A Guidebook for Homeowners.


Control the spread of invasive aquatic plants and document water quality conditions.


Long-term monitoring of lake water quality, aquatic plants, and the fishery indicate that conditions in Houghton Lake have improved significantly since the implementation of the plan. However, the infestation of new invasive species such as starry stonewort remain a concern in the lake.


Water Resources