Laguna Lake Dredge Scheduled

Written by Estero Bay News

August 26, 2021

As part of SLO’s Laguna Lake Natural Reserve Conservation Plan, the City will start a two-week project in mid-September to dredge the lake. Staging and equipment setup for the project will begin around Sept. 1.

“This program and project have been decades in the making and will help contribute to a better quality of life for many San Luis Obispo community members,” said the City’s Sustainability & Natural Resources Official Bob Hill. “Ongoing maintenance will help restore water quality over time, make the lake deeper, and allow for more recreational opportunities. Ultimately, we’re taking care of an important natural resource in our community for the benefit of both people and wildlife.”

During the dredging project, there may be some temporary closures of holes at the disc golf course as well as some parking space closures, but the disc golf course, hiking trails, playground and dog park will all remain open. The 344-acre Laguna Lake Natural Reserve includes a natural lake that has been modified over time as part of the surrounding pattern of historic development. On average, one to three inches of sediment are deposited on the lakebed each year. Runoff from the Prefumo Canyon, Sycamore Canyon, and Los Osos Valley watersheds drain to Laguna Lake.

“Over the years there has been a lot of sediment flowing into the lake because Prefumo Creek was re-routed in the early 1960s, which is creating additional management issues that we must now address. Just like City streets, the condition of the lake will continue to deteriorate if we don’t maintain it regularly,” Hill said.

The lake is an important wildlife habitat and is used for passive recreational activities, such as boating, birding, fishing, and quiet and scenic enjoyment.

However, the lake has experienced toxic blue-green algae and has accumulated other naturally occurring contaminants due to the sediment and runoff flowing into the lake over the years. The City currently plans to repeat the dredging once every other year to maintain the lake and improve water quality. This maintenance program will also establish regular water quality monitoring.

This $715,000 project is funded by local sales tax revenue through Measure G-20.

For more information about the project, contact Sustainability & Natural Resources Official Bob Hill at 805.781.7211 or rhill@slocity.org

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