Beaver Pond Restoration - and its impact on cycling
Windy Run Blog: When I first lived in Arlington, we lived next to the Beaver Pond. An accidental creation, the Ballston Beaver Pond was originally designed simply to capture run off water - until some beavers thought better of it - and turned it into a habitat. The Beaver Pond is on a weird triangle of land between I-66, N Fairfax, and Glebe, bumping up against Washington. It has recreational trails on all sides. One trail runs up the west side of the Beaver Pond, crosses I-66, and connects to the Custis Trail.
Arlington is renovating the Beaver Pond. This will impact the recreational trails. The Beaver Pond website lists three different concepts of what might become of the recreational trails - but is devoid of any information on what exactly the county has decided to do. While Arlco has figured out how to create a blog about the Beaver Pond, they are using the blog to tell use that you have to come to a physical meeting to actually learn what is going on (*sigh*).
The meeting to figure out what is going on is next Tuesday, November 13:
Scroll down - the revised concept plan is basically what is going forward. A bunch of us weighed in on the concept plans back in 2011 because it was looking like the "interpretive features" were going to cause pedestrians to congregate on the trail.
Took a look at the revised concept plan. Hoping that the planners are selecting trees that beavers don't like otherwise the "evergreen buffer" will become dinner. The idea of a "turtle basking station" was kind of neat. Most turtles just use a log or a rock but the turtles at the beaver pond will have basking stations. Sweet!
I think I'm going to start calling my comfy chair the "basking station".
Originally Posted by dbb
I was flipping through the County's Capital Improvement Plan looking for something else and ran across a section on the Ballston Beaver Pond. The description there makes it sounds like only the storm water parts of the project are being done now and the "boardwalks, trails and interpretation" will be done Fiscal Year 2021 since the funding they are using for construction right now can only be used to improve storm water runoff. I'll quote the project description here:
13 Ballston Pond
The Ballston Pond was originally designed and constructed as a stormwater detention facility when the I-66 highway was built, to collect and slow down the stormwater runoff from I-66. Over the years, the pond has been filling up with sediments deposited by the stormwater runoff, which slows down when it reaches the pond. Retrofitting the Ballston Beaver Pond is a high priority project in the County's stormwater management program. The plan that has been designed incorporates features such as boardwalks, trails and interpretation which are unable to be funded through the County's watershed funds. This project is for the final design and implementation of the trails and boardwalks.
This is interesting because the National Park Service has been waging a war with beavers on the Mount Vernon Trail north of Slaters Lane for the last year. Whenever the beavers dam up the creek running under the boardwalk there, the Park Service comes along and breaches the dam. I think they pulled the plug on the dam today because water was flowing through a sizeable gap in the dam. I'm sure they have their reasons but I kind of like that area when it's filled with water.