Trucking operations for the deepest part of the North Pond dredge continue. If work progresses at pace, we hope to complete the major earthmoving operations and dredging by mid-July. This will come as a welcome relief to everyone who loves the park and North Pond, myself included. Our contractors have been working diligently and are significantly ahead of schedule for this portion of the work. As far as the big-impact part of the project, the end is in sight.
You will notice contractors working and trucking this Saturday, July 9 from morning to early afternoon to make up ground lost to the holiday weekend and from this week’s heavy rains. Big Marsh, where most of the dredged material is going, is aptly named and this week’s rains meant that we needed things to dry out there in order to keep dredging. This real-time dredging/trucking operation allows us to minimize the need for storing and drying sediment in the park. Expect some temporary path closures and other impacts on Saturday. Our North Pond Gardeners will be out just the same, tending the natural areas and gardens around North Pond from 10-12. Learn more about participating with these amazing volunteers here.
Precast concrete piping and drains will also arrive soon. These pieces are the infrastructure that connects the underdrains to be installed under several low spots in the park that traditionally flood. Once complete, this underground network will direct stormwater from these areas to North Pond while making the land more usable for park visitors, more often. While we are doing our best to minimize park impacts; they are necessary. To install the drains in the park land north of the pond and re-grade and shape to reduce flooding, temporary fencing will be installed on Monday and will remain until new grass is planted and established. Stay tuned for updates about the extent and timing of this and future park impacts in future blog posts.
In closing, recent events, both local and global have taken a toll on us all. For me, one way to rebalance myself at times like these is spending time in nature. North Pond is one of my most special places. Even during the disruption of its restoration, I continue to find peace on every visit, which are daily during the project: watching a family of ducks swimming in the largest part of the pond where the dredge is complete or seeing turtles or various birds basking on the logs, temporary dam, and materials piles. Nature is resilient. While I can’t wait to see the restoration complete and North Pond a vibrant (and peaceful) natural area for generations to come, the resilience and beauty I see there even now gives me hope, peace, and quite a few smiles every day!