February 27, 2017
Due to ongoing water quality issues in the Newtown Park retention pond, the city had the pond dredged to remove accumulated sediment and improve the functionality and aesthetics of the facility. Typically following a dredging process, the water remains murky for a period as the particulates from the bottom are suspended throughout the pond water column and then eventually settle out into the bottom of the pond.
In the case of the Newtown Park retention pond, however, the particulates never settled and the pond remained murky. To alleviate the water quality issue, a treatment of alum was given last week to settle the particulates and clear the pond. Alum is a treatment commonly used in ponds containing wildlife to clear the water. Although the initial results were successful with the pond clearing, it appears that numerous fish died over the weekend. The city deeply regrets this result and will further monitor the water conditions in the pond until it reaches full stability. At this point, it appears that most of the fish killed are the smaller ones and that the larger koi are surviving. Turtles also appear to be unharmed. Once it is determined that the pond is fully stabilized; the city will examine options to revitalize the wildlife in the pond.