Construction on a stormwater gravel wetland along the corner of Main Street and Fairview Drive will begin this week, one of a handful of projects aimed at bringing the town and village closer to its goals for stormwater and phosphorus.
The project is a joint effort between the town and village as part of their flow restoration plan, a framework for lessening the impact of urban stormwater and returning streams to their natural conditions, said village water quality superintendent Jim Jutras.
“Rather than the water just running off of the roads directly into the streams, the water will run into this constructed wetland, which will act as this natural filter,” Jutras explained. It will then release the water in a controlled way, similar to a natural wetland, which Jutras said helped prevent flooding in some areas during Tropical Storm Irene.
The area will look similar to the way it does now once the wetland matures, he added.
Construction hours will be from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and are expected to have temporary impacts traffic and pedestrian lanes. The estimated date of completion is mid-September.
One of several flow restoration projects planned for the coming years – with two slated in the town and another in the village – the wetland will also aid the town and village in its effort to comply with phosphorus removal targets. Phosphorous remains currently one of the leading concerns for water quality in the Lake Champlain basin as excess amounts contribute to algae blooms and threaten environmental and public health.
Town and village departments are striving to work together on tackling water quality projects to get “the biggest bang for our buck,” Jutras said.
“We’re trying to prioritize based on the best investment,” he said.