Workers fix washouts along beach at Clermont park

City officials laying new landscaping to help with stormwater runoff

CLERMONT, Fla. – Days after opening a new park in Clermont, crews are repairing the beach area and a section of a popular trail after recent rainfall caused washouts.

The City of Clermont celebrated the opening of the new $10 million stormwater park called Victory Pointe Park last week. Days after the celebration, several sections along the beach area washed out.

James Kinzler, the director of capital projects for the city, said the recent days of rainfall are to blame for the washouts.

"Fortunately and unfortunately, we've had a very wet summer. I think we've had some record rainfall," Kinzler said.

Kinzler said since the park is so new, much of the landscaping hasn't settled yet and crews are still planting sod. Kinzler said that is what caused all of the stormwater runoff.

"Knowing that may occur, we have put in the double barrier and it did its job and protected the core of the sand from going into the lake and we feel there's no major incidents or pollution to the lake," Kinzler said.

Kinzler adds water runoff is common on construction sites.

City crews spent Wednesday spreading the sand back out along the beach and repairing a small stretch of the South Lake Trail that was damaged during the washouts. 

Crews are also planting more grass in the park. Kinzler said that will help stop water from flowing into the lake.

Even with more rain in the forecast, Kinzler said he does not think this will be a long-term issue.

"Once we're comfortable that all the areas are finally sodded and we eliminate that sheet flow of water toward the lake and let the sod and landscaping really stabilize, we won't have these ongoing issues," Kinzler said.

Kinzler added that crews will be out at the park every day to monitor the conditions.

"We'll be heavily monitoring the area to make sure if any washouts do occur, we address them in a timely manner and before they have any intrusion into the lake or overflow the barrier," he said. 

Kinzler said crews hope to finish laying the sod in a couple weeks. The park and trail are open to the public.

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