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Answer Man: Cascade Lake Park plan not all wet

September 14, 2018
Cascade Lake Park

Cascade Lake Park

After the deluge of rain last week, there’s a lot of water standing in parts of the new city park, Cascade Lake Park, where I don’t think there’s supposed to be any, according to the map I’ve seen. There was even standing water on the roadway to the parking lot several days after the storm.

Do you happen to know if that’s as a result of poor planning for proper drainage? I know that was a very unusual dump of rain last week, but it seems it should have drained by now.

— Laurie Sutter

Poor planning doesn’t appear to be the issue.

Mike Nigbur, who heads Rochester’s parks and forestry division, points to a catch basin that was accidentally clogged during renovations at Cascade Lake Park.

Evidently when you loosen and move tons of dirt and rocks, some can wash into places they’re not supposed to be, which can lead to high water when Mother Nature opts to soak the area.

“It’s typical during construction,” Nigbur said of problems with debris.

Current work to develop about 8 acres of the 26-acre park comes with a price tag of approximately $3.5 million. And a clogged catch basin hasn’t been the only surprise along the way.

This week, the Rochester Park Board approved spending an additional $146,000 to stabilize the road through the park after problems were found in the soils in the roadbed.

Nigbur said soil sampling failed to reveal some of the issues that were later discovered after construction was underway.

So now, some work that had been slated for the second phase of park development is being moved forward. That work includes installation of some piping, geotextile fabric and more rock base for the roadway. Additionally, fill material is placed in the rain garden area to support the curb line.

Also this week, the park board learned that bids for some amenities at the park came in over budget. That included landscaping, bridges, shelter and lighting was part of the basic park project. Now those plans are likely to be redrawn to keep things under budget.

So, it may be slow going as the Cascade Lake Park plans take shape, but it doesn’t seem that a bit of rain is going to make efforts a total washout.

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