Storm Ponds - what are they for?

March 18, 2021 / 5 mins read

Stormwater is water that flows from rainstorms and melting snow. As the water flows from our roofs, driveways, lawns, streets, and sidewalks it collects dirt, sand gravel, and other pollutants along the way. The water empties into a storm drain where pipes carry it away to storm ponds.

What are Storm Ponds? Why is there one in my Community?

Storm ponds are created to collect and hold rainfall and snowmelt before it reaches our rivers, creeks, and streams. Not only are storm ponds beautiful green spaces within the community, but they also serve to protect homes and businesses from possible flooding after a storm, reduce erosion risks, and reduce the number of sediments and pollutants entering our waterways.

How do Storm Ponds Reduce the number of sediments and pollutants before they enter our waterways?

As water is collected in the storm pond, it brings along pollutants found in every community such as fertilizers, pesticides, vehicle fluids, metals, and road salts. As the runoff is collected in the storm pond, over time the pollutants and sediments can settle to the bottom of the pond, therefore, become “filtered” out. The vegetation around these ponds also serves to reduce erosion and assist in removing contaminants such as herbicides and pesticides from the water before entering the pond and waterways.

My Storm Pond is dry, is that normal?

Yes, there are several different kinds of storm ponds. Dry storm ponds remain dry and do not contain water most of the time. These “ponds” only fill with water during heavy rain, functioning in a similar way to wet storm ponds, filling with water very quickly, to prevent the stormwater system from becoming overwhelmed and causing flooding.

Can Storm Ponds be used for recreation?

Storm ponds provide many features to the Community, but they are not safe for recreational activities. Due to the rapidly changing water levels and poor water quality, a storm pond should not be used for recreational purposes like swimming or boating. In the winter, pollutants such as road salts in the ponds can cause the ice to be thinner and weaker than other bodies of water. This makes them extremely dangerous to walk or skate on.

Storm ponds have an important job to do, they protect the community from flooding and help create cleaner stormwater. Due to the constantly flowing water in and out of the ponds, it is important to remember to enjoy the ponds from a distance.

Your Future.

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