Retention pond intends to raise water quality

Garrett Kluever, Biz and Tech Editor

Plans for a retention pond to be put in Whitewater on a property on the northeast part of town bordering Prospect Drive were presented to the Community Development Authority (CDA) Dec. 7 at their annual meeting.

Three different versions of the pond were presented to the CDA, although the council decided to table the proposal for next meeting so the city can research more info on each option.

According to the Stormwater Wet Pond and Wetland Management Guidebook by the EPA, retention ponds “are designed and constructed to contain and/or filter pollutants that flush off of the landscape. Without proper maintenance, nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorus that are typically found in stormwater runoff can accumulate leading to degraded conditions.”

Typically large storm water pipes are redirected to the pond, which fills with sediment filled water. Sediment sets to the bottom as smaller storm pipes filter out the now cleaner water.

The city of Whitewater was approved for a grant by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to build the pond in December 2016. The grant will match Whitewater’s funding up to 150,000 dollars, thus the budgeters have planned the cost to be within 300,000 dollars.

Pond A is a basic retention pond design. The circle shows up in the other graphs but will not be a part of the B and C versions, it is simply there for comparison.

Pond B has an elongated culvert that runs across the property line. The benefit of this pond design is that it sits entirely on city owned property unlike C and A.

Pond C extends out lesser than B on city property but the design goes south into private land  which would mean they would require clearance and it would impede on already developed land.

Currently Whitewater’s water quality standards are below state standards. Brad Marquardt, city of Whitewater Public Works Director wants to improve that.

“We are trying to improve our water quality standards to meet the state requirements. This will not only improve Whitewater’s water quality, but state water quality overall.”

There have apparently been previous talks about Hi-Pro expanding into the property above them where the retention pond would be built, but as of now no request has been formally processed to the city or the DNR.

The grant from the DNR runs out by the end of 2018 but there is a possibility of extension. Right now, the project would have to be complete with money paid to contractors by the end of the year in order to get the matching money.  

Currently the City of Whitewater is figuring out exact numbers for each plan and will present them at the nearest date for CDA meetings.