Pierce County started construction on a new stormwater pond in April and it’s scheduled to be finished next month.
The pond is intended to remove pollutants from stormwater runoff before it drains into Woodland Creek.
Woodland Creek also drains into Clarks Creek which is currently polluted. Pierce County has started several projects to resolve that issue.
Harold Smelt is an employee for the Pierce County Planning and Public Works Department and is a part of some of those projects.
“The project described as a ‘retrofit’, typically add some sort of water quality treatment to an existing stormwater outfall, treating the water before it enters into a creek,” Smelt said.
Special filters are being installed during construction to filter specific pollutants out of the water before it drains into Woodland Creek.
“These are usually a ‘filter vault,’ a large buried concrete vault that contains canisters of filter media designed to remove specific pollutants,” Smelt said.
The main pollutant of the creek is sediment and the purpose of these projects is to improve water quality. Many projects in progress are also described as a stream or bank stabilization.
“By stabilizing the creek channels, we can reduce the amount of sediment washing downstream into lower reaches of Clarks Creek,” Smelt said.