Walker Pond has the potential to support boating and fishing as well as skating in the winter months, but due to nutrient and sediment loading from the pond’s watershed, the waterbody has significantly deteriorated in recent years. The primary recreational uses of the pond have been fishing, skating, bird watching, and quiet contemplation.
Walker Pond is choked with excessive aquatic vegetation that needs to be removed for the health of the pond. A three-phase capital improvement project was proposed and approved by the Select Board in 2021.
A Phased Project Strategy
The Walker Pond Improvement Project is a multi-phased project broken into three (3) categories of activities to address the water quality of Walker Pond.
Analysis of the contributary area providing runoff to the pond. The analysis will help the design team develop the improvement plan. Nature based solutions will be installed to encourage infiltration and promote nutrient uptake and soil activity resulting in stormwater quality improvements. Sediment and litter removal will be increased with the installation of drainage manholes and sumps. Public education and participation via pamphlets and media, catch basin disk placement, and educational signage will support the continued improvement of water quality.
Assessment of treatment options for waterbody conditions. A report conducted by ESS Group, Inc. in 2017 provided recommendations to improve the health of the pond. Conservation has endorsed hydro raking, the mechanical removal of vegetative overgrowth and will consider the application of chemicals, herbicides, and algicides to the pond if deemed necessary. Improvements to the outlet structure, including the overflow grate and wooden stop-log replacements will be assessed.
Involves the extension of the sewer main in Walker Lane. Although not specifically a part of the Walker Pond Capital Improvement Project, the extension of the sewer main would allow additional properties abutting the pond to redirect their sewage flow from entering septic system and leach fields in the ground and directing it toward the sewer main where it is treated at the sewer treatment plant prior to discharge.