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Cost-effective Solutions to Prolong the Lifespan of a Stormwater Pond

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Oct 03, 2017

AS SEEN IN Association Help Now PA/NJ: Written by Industry Expert Kyle Finerfrock, Environmental Scientist

Prolong DredgingWhen communities begin anticipating and planning for possible future expenses, they will likely discover that the removal of accumulated sediment in stormwater management facilites has a very large price tag. In fact, dredging is often one of the largest expenses a community will ever face. Luckily, there are things that can be done to help reduce costs and prolong the time span between dredging. By better understanding the purpose of a stormwater management facility and employing proper stormwater management techniques, a community can rest assured that the best decisions are made for the pond, the surrounding environment and the community’s budget.

While a stormwater management facility can be a beautiful asset to a community, it also has specific engineered and environmental purposes. First, it is used to slow down and dissipate the energy of the flowing water from rainstorms, which picks up speed and energy as it passes over a community’s impervious surfaces such as roofs, streets, driveways and sidewalks. If the water doesn’t get slowed down by a stormwater pond, it can

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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry, Published Articles

Utilizing Bathymetry to Budget for Future Repairs and Dredging

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Jan 19, 2017

Written by Industry Expert, Kevin Tucker, Chief Executive Officer

If you live in a planned community governed by a Homeowners’ Association (HOA), are part of a lake association, own commercial developments, belong to a golf club, are a member of a recreational club, or you are a board member or manager for any of the above, you are likely familiar with the need to maintain a reserve and replacement budget. In many cases, it is a statutory requirement.

Reserve Studies are a great tool to help prepare stakeholders for significant future repair and replacement expenses. They often uncover items that might not have been top of mind if left unaddressed, but would pose a significant financial risk to the group. In most cases, the Reserve Specialist preparing the report is able to identify very accurate estimates for the expected life of your physical assets, as well as the corresponding costs for making significant repairs or replacing them as their expected life comes to an end.

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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry, Aquatics in Brief Newsletters

What Lies Beneath: Bathymetry and Its Importance to Turf Managers

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Oct 20, 2016

AS SEEN IN Virginia Turfgrass Journal: Written by Industry Expert, Trent Nelson, Aquatic Specialist

VA_Turfgrass_Article_Pg1_e.jpgHave you ever experienced a dry season where rain was not in the immediate forecast and you were not absolutely certain that your irrigation ponds held enough water to cover you? As a former assistant golf course superintendent, I remember times when our irrigation lake was extremely low, and our greens could not go one more night without water. I knew that there was a good chance that I’d be hand watering them several times the next day, and each day without rain seemed to require more applied water than the one before. I knew I would soon be staring at mud in the irrigation lake where water once was.

This is not a situation that any golf course or turf manager wants to find himself (or herself) navigating, yet it seems to happen somewhere in the region every year. Along with the tremendous amount of scientific research, management techniques and cutting edge pesticides that are available to manage turf, there are strategies and tools that are equally important to ensure that ponds are managed properly and are aesthetically pleasing to your guests, but also to maintain their capacity for one of the turf industry’s most important maintenance tasks: irrigation.

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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry, Published Articles

Pond Management: How Much Does Dredging Cost?

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Jun 23, 2015

Brought to you by our trusted partners at The Mapping Network

silver-lake-sediment_MappingNetwork_eHow much does dredging cost is the most commonly asked question for many lake associations. The Mapping Network sat down with Dan McDougal, President of Dredge America and asked him that question.

When lake homeowner’s call for our assistance with their potential upcoming dredging projects, the first question we usually get asked is, “How much does it cost?” This is usually followed by, “Just a ballpark figure that I won’t hold you to.” Then we often hear, “We have a board meeting tonight and I wanted to report on dredging to get the project moving.”

There are hundreds of variables that determine the cost of restoring a lake. There are three questions that need to be answered to begin the process of getting a ballpark feasibility price:

  1. How much material is there to dredge?
  2. Where can you put the material that is coming out of the lake?
  3. What is the nature of the material to be dredged?
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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry

Bathymetry: Maintaining the Beauty of Your Lake or Pond

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Nov 18, 2014

AS SEEN IN AssociationHelpNow, Issue 4, 2014: Written by Leigh Cesanek, AssociationHelpNow staff writer

dredging_photo_Richmond_Brent_07.2013_bDredging, the process of removing sediment and debris from lakes and ponds that builds up naturally over time, presents challenges to homeowners associations. Maintaining the environment of an association’s lake or pond provides for an overall better experience for residents and helps to increase the natural beauty of a body of water. Kevin Tucker, owner of SOLitude Lake Management, which provides lake and pond management, fisheries management, and related environmental services for the Eastern United States, discussed the process of dredging and the first step of a solution, bathymetry, for homeowners associations.

According to Tucker, the costly process of dredging occurs from sediment, grass clippings, leaves, fertilizer, other organic matter, and pollutants contained in stormwater settling to the bottom of these bodies of water. When stormwater is left unmanaged and these sediments build up, the need for it to be dredged becomes pressing because these ponds and lakes cannot function properly with it.

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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry, Published Articles

When Accuracy Matters: GPS Bathymetric Lake Mapping

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Sep 18, 2014

Brought to you by our trusted partners at The Mapping Network
Written by Tyler VanMeeteren, Vice President.

Matt_mapping_lake_cherokee_sc._cA lake or pond seems serene and effortless to maintain, but under the surface is a dynamic organism requiring expert knowledge to produce a perfect balance. To fully enjoy your waterbody, it is essential to know the facts for making the best lake and pond management decisions: exact acreage, depths, chemistry, etc. Armed with this knowledge you will be able to properly place structure, deliver appropriate fish stocking densities, select the correct fish species, apply the right amount of aquatic weed control product, and of course gain a better idea where those bass may be hiding! An accurate GPS lake map provides the information needed to make the most of your aquatic resource.

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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry

Pond Inspections and Bathymetric Studies

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   May 08, 2014

Written by Industry Expert Brad Harris, Forest Biologist and Aquatic Specialist

3D_lake_mapping_contour_bathymetric_sedimentation_mapsStormwater pond inspection and pond maintenance requirements vary from state to state and municipality to municipality. When a pond was constructed may also play a role in which stormwater regulations apply. The objective of these inspections, maintenance, and regulatory requirements are to ensure that stormwater ponds are functioning as designed, which is to collect pollutants, such as sediment, nutrients, debris, and trash, among others. These stormwater BMP (Best Management Practice) ponds are constructed to capture these pollutants and prevent them from being released into downstream water resources (streams, rivers, lakes and oceans).

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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry, Regulatory Compliance

Pond Management: Aquatics in Brief – Spring 2014

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Apr 09, 2014

Aquatics_In_Brief_SLM_Spring_Q2_Newsletter_COVERSOLitude Lake Management produces a quarterly educational newsletter to provide you with ongoing lake, pond and fisheries management knowledge.

In the spring issue, find out how to build a sense of community by organizing fishing tournaments for kids. Learn how to identify the difficult to combat and invasive weed, hydrilla, which is making its way into the northeastern United States. And read about Brad Harris’ success in ensuring that the ponds on two golf courses hosting PGA tournaments were balanced and beautiful for each event and his recommendations for stormwater Best Management Practices and bathymetric studies. 

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Topics: The SOLution, Aquatics in Brief Newsletters

Pond Dredging: Planning For Your “Big Dig”

by: SOLitude Lake Management   |   Nov 05, 2013

dredging a community pondIf your community has a lake or pond, it may have crossed your mind that dredging will be needed at some point. Hopefully your community has had a professional reserve study performed which includes funds allocated to a future dredging project. If you have reviewed this line item, you may see that it is one of the most costly projects that a community will ever undergo. Still, you may find that even though funds have been allocated, these funds may not be adequate to cover the scope of work needed. In order to prepare for the “big dig” that may be around the corner, here are a couple of tips to prolong the time needed between dredging projects:

Bathymetry: Your lake is a dynamic and unique ecosystem. Bathymetry allows you to better understand the changes that are going on in your lake. Bathymetry is the science of three dimensional lake mapping where surface area is shown with the corresponding depths. It shows the underwater mountains and valleys. Specifically, it shows the very shallow parts of your pond. It also gives information on the quantity, location, and types of sediments sitting at the bottom of your pond. When compared to original plans, it will also allow you to calculate the rate at which your pond is filling in with sediment. This information allows you to tailor your dredging planning and budgeting to be more site and cost specific, reducing the unknown and taking the guess work out of your long term reserve planning and budgeting.

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Topics: Pond Management Best Practices, Lake Mapping and Bathymetry

Sub Bottom Lake Mapping

by: Tracy King   |   Jan 19, 2012

New! Sub-Bottom Sediment Profiling Mapping System

True lake bottom profile can be seen with lake mapping technology

dredging_photo_Richmond_Brent_07.2013_bAs an exclusive Lake Mapping Partner of The Mapping Network, LLC., Solitude Lake Management is excited to share their latest addition of an automated sub-bottom sediment profile mapping system. This new technology is fully automated and does not require labor intensive manual sediment measurements. The system logs sediment and water depth readings simultaneously, allowing owners to chart the bottom of their lake with remarkable accuracy. Dredging companies use this information to accurately bid and complete projects. Mapping lake sediment with this technology saves time, money, and materials by being informed and efficient with the dredging process.

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Topics: Lake Mapping and Bathymetry

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