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The Delavan Lake - Mound Road Ponds Maintenance and Upkeep!

Status updates, documents and timelines!



August 26th, 2022 - Dredging of East Pond Begins!

Mid-American Dredging and Batterman were on-site at the dredging site. They lowered the Dredge into the East Pond

And Began the dredging process! 

See the following video for a quick overview!




A Report from Dan Lemanski on August 3, 2022

Dredging Pre-Construction Meeting Update!


Today was really a red-letter day for all of us. As you know the Town has decided to invest $573,320.84 on a dredging project to return the Mound Road Basins to functionality.  The basins are designed to trap sediment and Phosphorous before it enters our Lake The basins were last dredged 15 years ago and have lost almost all the trapping efficiency over the years.  The Town solicited bids on the work and Mid-America Dredging of Good Hope Illinois won the bid.

Today’s meeting was a pre-construction meeting during which the engineering, regulatory, and contractor involved in the project participated. They reviewed; schedules, plans for equipment (and support staging), a review of bonds and insurance coordination for the work, erosion control requirements, and a project payment schedule. The ensuing discussion was open and very detailed. and All parties appeared to walk away from the meeting confident the job would be done properly, on time, and on budget. Three representatives from Mid-America Dredging attended.  They were joined by Mary Knipper, Chair of the Town’s Lake Committee, Frank McKearn of Batterman Engineering, Heather Marquart of Walworth County’s  LURM, Tom Thiel Public Works Director of the Town of Delavan, John Olsen Town Administrator, and (the author of the Dredging Plan) Peter Berrini. The good news was that all agreed to the following initial work starting schedule:

  • organizing materials and supplies needed - will begin the week of August 8th to 12th,

  • install erosion and control measures - August 15th to 19th

  • AND beginning August 22 the dredging will begin!!!!


We will try to provide weekly updates on progress!




 Dan Lemanski has been an advocate of Delavan Lake for decades! He has served on various Lake Committees and has personally been involved in past science and engineering projects. Both Dan Lemanski and Don Holst(another Delavan Lake Citizen Advocate) led the Last Mound Road Pond Dredging project in 2007, as well as the Inlet Dredging project in 2011. Dan is currently a member of the Town of Delavan Lake Committee.

View the informal Timeline of the Mound Road Ponds/Basins Dredging Project

Note: This is a timeline created by Glenn Dickow (Lake Committee Member) to assist the committee. It is not a formal Town of Delavan document and is subject to change.  

June 2022: The Town of Delavan Board approved bid by Mid American Dredging company to dredge the Ponds! Actual dredging work is expected to start in Mid-July!!


A Brief History...

1996 - Pond Creation

"The Ponds" were created in 1992 after the complete restoration of Delavan Lake, which was a devastating event that we never want that to happen again! (Learn more about the Delavan Lake Restoration of the early 90s).

The Ponds were designed to collect harmful nutrients and sediments before they reach Delavan Lake (find out how), they require regular maintenance. To remain effective, regular maintenance (or dredging) was supposed to take place a minimum of every 5 years. The Ponds have not been maintained since 2007 (14 years since the ponds have been maintained!)


2017 - Citizen Appeal To Reduce Sediment Buildup in Ponds 

In 2017 (10 years after the last maintenance on the ponds), the two individuals who spear-headed the 2007 maintenance effort appealed to the Town of Delavan Lake Committee to, once again, hydraulically dredge the ponds. As a matter of course, the town lake committee commissioned Berrini & Associates, LLC to do an An Assessment of the Mound Road Ponds, to Determine Optimum Maintenance and Enhancement Options for Implementation. (View this report)


2018 - Lake Committee Make a Calculated Mistake

The assessment from Berrini & Associates recommended Hydraulically dredging the ponds to remove sediment from the Ponds, and return them to a more efficient state. However, the Town Lake Committee instead opted to put "pellets" into the ponds to reduce the sediment. This approach, although cheaper, turned out to be totally ineffective!

2019 - Again, Lake Residents appeal for Pond Maintenance!

In 2019, numerous lake residents and citizens once again appealed to the committee to have the ponds dredged! 

The original plan/recommendation was to Hydraulically Dredge the ponds. This was the approach taken in 2007, and it was considered a success. And the only question seemed whether or not to purchase a dredge for out-year needs, or to hire a ​contractor to do so when required. Personnel from the Delavan Lake Sanitary District (DLSD) were tasked with obtaining information about the options for committee review.

Although an assessment had already been done, an "updated" assessment was once again commissioned by Berrini & Associates. (View this report).  

2020 - Shift in Potential Options and Cause for Concerns!

Although the Berrini & associates assessment still recommended hydraulic dredging, the lake committee's adding the possibility of Mechanically Dredging the ponds in 2020! Mechanically dredging the ponds would involve the use of heavy machinery to "dig" out the pond sediments, and haul it away. The committee has requested proposals from private contractors to describe how this alternative proposal would work, and what factors would need to be considered. This proposals are pending delivery. However, there are potential risks with this approach, and Berrini & Associates, LLC provided an additional comparison document (Risks and Benefits) to help the committee. (View the report).

2021 - Wetland Protection, Time and Money!

Although the funding, permits and experience are both known and in place to Hydraulically dredge the ponds, the Mechanical Dredging option is where most of the of the Lake Committee time and efforts are being placed. 

In an effort to better understand any impacts on the wetlands surrounding the ponds, some committee members met with the DNR in early January. (transcript from that conversation)

Once again, one of the principle individuals responsible for the 2007 hydraulic dredging of the Ponds (Don Holst) presented his experiences and comparison concerns to the Lake Committee at the February 3rd meeting. See link to Don's presentation!

Mechanically dredging the ponds will be a significant more expensive and complex undertaking in and out of the wetlands where the ponds are located! Additional permits will be also required due to the potential impact to the surrounding wetlands. The Lake Committee has requested a proposal/presentation from the engineering firm of Baxter & Woodman. 

Baxter Woodman recommends Hydraulically Dredging the ponds!!

The original recommendation proposed to the Lake Committee back in 2017 and again in 2019!!


Mechanically dredging the ponds was expected to be a significantly more expensive and complex undertaking in and out of the wetlands where the ponds are located! There were always many concerns about this potential option. Therefore, the Lake Committee requested a proposal/presentation from the engineering firm of Baxter & Woodman to review their estimations on work, costs, concerns and to provide any recommendations. This presentation, to the committee and to the public, took place on April 20th, 6PM during the Annual TOD meeting at Lake Lawn Lodge.



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