Stratford pond to be restored with help from 3 levels of government

·2 min read
Kelly's Pond was once a popular hangout for anglers, but siltation from a subdivision development nearby has made the pond shallow. (Tony Davis/CBC - image credit)
Kelly's Pond was once a popular hangout for anglers, but siltation from a subdivision development nearby has made the pond shallow. (Tony Davis/CBC - image credit)

Three levels of government are pitching in to restore Kelly's Pond, once a popular fishing spot in Stratford, P.E.I.

The federal and provincial governments have announced combined funding of $254,088 while the town is contributing another $92,412 for the restoration project, expected to start soon.

The pond was once a popular hangout for anglers, but silt buildup from nearby developments has made the pond shallow. Some spots are only a metre deep.

"Our watershed group is extremely happy that this funding has been awarded to the town. We have been pushing for years for this project to come to fruition so we're extremely excited to be involved with it and the money is earmarked," said Kaylee Busniuk, coordinator with the Stratford Area Watershed Improvement Group.

"We're working with a contractor right now and we know we need to dredge some of the ponds. That'll make them deeper."

Restoration of the pond has been discussed in the town for over a decade.

Stratford Area Watershed Improvement Group
Stratford Area Watershed Improvement Group

The restoration will mitigate the effects of extreme weather events and climate change, including increased rainfall intensity, flooding, and erosion, in addition to providing a healthy habitat for local wildlife, she said.

Restoration work will begin soon and be completed in collaboration with the Stratford Area Watershed Improvement Group and the town.

"We plan to drain both Moore's and Kelly's Pond and leave the sediment to dry over the summer months," said Katie Sonier, environmental sustainability coordinator for the town.

The hope is to once again have fishing at the pond, even if it's years away, said Stratford Mayor Steve Ogden.

"There could be fish stocked in here, we could have fishing in here. Right now it is not as useful as it could be and we're looking forward to the day it is going to be back to its pristine beauty and we're able to use it to its full potential," he said.

Tony Davis/CBC
Tony Davis/CBC

In a few years, the watershed improvement group hopes to be able to open up some streams to allow fish to naturally flow into the pond, Busniuk said.

Before the work can start, the province has to issue a permit and its environment department has to take a look at the pond, Ogden said.

He is hoping work starts on draining the pond in May and it's refilled by the fall.

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