If 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.