Innovative stormwater pond taking shape at DeSoto

Satellite Beach’s DeSoto Parkway is quickly becoming a shining example of a unique stormwater facility by cleaning water before it enters the Indian River Lagoon while also providing recreational opportunities.

Located next to man-made bioswale medians lined with native plants, such is the case with the 1.54-acre retention pond being dug to 12 feet deep on the site of a former practice field. The pond will treat stormwater from the 293-acre DeSoto Drainage Basin – including from the bioswales – prior to entering the lagoon. The pond will detain stormwater that enters through the pipes along DeSoto Parkway. Nutrients and other pollutants will settle out for 10 days before the water is transferred to the Indian River Lagoon.

But, perhaps equally important, the project also includes 1,813 feet of walking trails, multigenerational exercise equipment, a kayak launch and educational kiosks.

The pond will be lined, on the west side, with a bio-absorption media that will help filter the water. The overall project is expected to remove approximately 461 pounds of nitrogen per year and 95.7 pounds of phosphorous per year.

The city was able to build the pond on the DeSoto practice field without losing recreational space by entering into a maintenance agreement with Patrick Air Force Base for use of the field owned by the base in the Pelican Coast area along South Patrick Drive, said City Manager Courtney Barker.

Grants for the pond – including from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) and the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – totaled $560,500. Also helping pay for the pond was a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Water Quality Restoration Grant for $142,500.

Volunteers are needed for a community planting of mangroves and other native plants in the area. There will be a meeting to that effect on Sept. 1 at 9 a.m. at the public library. For more information, call Environmental Programs Coordinator Nick Sanzone at 321 773-4409, Ext. 227. 

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