Val-Kill Pond Restoration
This pond restoration is located on the historic Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site in Hyde Park, New York. Val-Kill Pond was formed around 1925 when a small dam was built across Fall-Kill, a perennial stream that drains into the Hudson River. The pond that was formed was originally six to seven acres in size. The Roosevelt family used the pond for swimming, boating, and fishing. Over the years, as siltation, sedimentation, and vegetation growth have occurred, the open water area of the pond has decreased considerably in size. This pond is one of the defining landscape features of the site. The loss of open water has caused the cultural landscape of the site to become a less and less accurate portrayal of historic conditions. Biohabitats, with assistance from the Mangi Environmental Group, was under contract with the National Park Service for planning, environmental compliance, and cultural resource compliance services for the restoration of the historic Val-Kill Pond. Biohabitats tasks included researching and describing applicable pond restoration techniques, including disposal of sediment, collecting sediment samples, analyzing pond sediments to determine if any contamination was present, estimating volume of material to be removed and processed, and determining impacts of sediment dewatering techniques. Finally, Biohabitats prepared a specification package for actual pond restoration to be used by the National Park Service in preparing contract documents.