Despite heavy rains that delayed dredging on Storm Lake early this summer, the work is going at a very rapid pace, the Lake Improvement Commission learned at its Monday meeting.
City of Storm Lake Public Works Director Pat Kelly said over 300,000 cubic yards of sludge had been removed from the lake. With about 13 weeks still to go in the dredging season, Kelly said that figure could be matched in the dredging project in the Stoney Point area yet this season. The dredge was moved last week from the east side to the west side of Stony Point.
"If we have a good week we should be able to get 30,000 yards a week," Kelly said. He said dredging is now going to a depth of 18-22 feet covering a 10-acre area. "We should hopefully get that done this year. We're taking it down to the old bottom. We're pretty close to where Stoney Point extended north."
While 10 acres may not seem like a huge area to some, the depth of sediments is what is remarkable, Kelly said. Dredging is being focused where sediments are at their deepest in the lake.
"We're taking 11 feet of material out," Kelly said. "We're into material that's never been dredged before. That's for certain."
In other business, the commission heard from Bob Payer, consulting engineer on the dredging project, who gave an update on East Spoil Site construction near Lakeside.
Payer said 520,000 cubic yards have been placed with about 80,000 cubic yards to go. Sludge placement, like sludge removal from the lake, is progressing at about 25,000 to 30,000 cubic yards a week. Payer said the East Spoil Site should be completed not long past the original completion date of Aug. 11, adding, "I believe that a 30-day time extension is within reason."
Treasurer Patti Moore said she and Lake Preservation Association Chair Gary Lalone had signed a loan agreement for $500,000 which the commission had approved at its last meeting to meet a shortfall due to a delay in receiving grants that had already been awarded. A $200,000 grant which Rep. Steve King had procured earlier has been delayed but is still expected, Moore said.