Huntsdale Subdivision Basin Retrofit
The Dry Branch Watershed 319 Grant funded water quality improvements
at this retention basin in the Huntsdale Subdivision.
Detention and retention basins are often an overlooked part of our community. Most people think that they fill up with stormwater when it rains, but never give them a second thought. The truth is, these basins can help keep our water supply and ecosystem clean and healthy. They help remove debris and filter pollutants from water before it makes its way into the water table or into streams.Through the Dry Branch Watershed Project, the City worked with property owners to make water quality retrofits, reduce maintenance and improve aesthetics while also increasing the basin's ability to remove debris and pollutants from runoff water.
What Is a Retrofit?
Think of a retrofit as an environmental overhaul. The City worked with property owners to change the characteristics of this common ground to make the area more eco-friendly. In this case, our goal was to remove silt and trash, increase oxygen for aquatic life, and create biofilters that are made of native plants and soil to infiltrate runoff and remove pollutants before it gets the creek.
You may ask yourself, "Why should we worry about the water quality of the retention basin?" Simply put, all water draining form our yards and streets has an impact on the quality of our streams, lakes, rivers, and drinking water. Water quality is important to humans and wildlife because the unwanted substances that make their way into our water can have an exponential impact on our drinking water, habitats, and even our taxes.
Over the last decade, a buildup of silt has caused the Huntsdale basin to lose the majority of its intended nine-foot depth. Higher water temperatures and nutrients from fertilizers in runoff lowered the oxygen, caused excessive algae and killed fish. This project returns the basin to its original depth. Improvements to the shoreline and surrounding common ground area with native plants will help filter pollutants, make better habitat for wildlife, and reduce the presence of unwanted insects caused by stagnant shallow water.
Before and After
Before construction: These pictures show the algea over growth
After construction: Native wild flowers flourish along the lake and in the rain gardens.
Wildlife are loving the cleaner habitat.
This project is funded by US EPA Region 7 through the Missouri Department of Natural Resources subgrant number G11-NPS-07