Project will keep polluted storm flows from Arcadia Lake

10 Apr 2018
BELCHERTOWN---Construction work to help keep Arcadia Lake healthy and clean is planned for the coming six weeks. 
The project on Federal and Metacomet streets will help to keep polluted storm flows from Arcadia Lake with replacement of  two conventional catch basins with new leaching catchbasins that will capture and infiltrate flow, installation of a grassed swale and bioswale (with additional types of plants) that will intercept and filter runoff before entering the lake. 
DPW Director Steve Williams has said the project will reduce the amount of sediment and nutrients flowing from the roadway.  
Williams explained, "Given our current estimates for roadway flow into the Lake, we expect to prevent more than 2,000 pounds of these contaminants from entering the Lake annually." 
The Towns new Conservation Agent Erica Cross observed that a 2014 water quality study of Arcadia Lake by Pioneer Valley Planning Commission showed that the lake is relatively clean.   
"It is important to do what we can to protect the lake's water quality going forward and MassDEP fortunately recognizes this through the series of grants they have provided for the lakes," said Cross.  
PVPC's water quality study, which also included Metacomet Lake, was made possible with funding from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to MassDEP under a Section 604b competitive grants program. 
The work to construct and design stormwater treatment facilities along the road's edge is made possible by additional funding through the Section 319 competitive grants program. 
The $70,000 project is funded 60 percent through a grant to the Town from MassDEP, funding that originates with EPA, and 40 percent by local match, including generous match from the Lakes Association. Design for the project is being done by Michael Clark of Design Consultants, Inc.
Once the project is completed, residents will have the opportunity to take a tour of the new facilities. 
The hope is that all residents will be inspired to do their part on their own properties to keep stormflow out of the lakes. Simple practices, such as the development of rain gardens to capture and infiltrate flow, can help to prevent erosion and keep pollution from reaching the lake. 
To get some ideas of what may be possible on your property, see the: Pioneer Valley Soak up the Rain website at: