Durand WQ

Durand Beach Water Quality Improvement

Durand Beach Water Quality Improvement Project, Monroe County, NY

In order to ensure that Durand Beach is safe for swimming, the Monroe County Health Department monitors the bacteria levels in the water at the beach. There are a number of sources which cause elevated bacteria levels but one source is the outlet to Sherry Swamp. It discharges to Lake Ontario in close proximity to the beach.

Sediment deposition in Sherry Swamp and the tributary leading to Sherry Swamp needed to be addressed. The tributary has required cleaning periodically over the years in an effort to help alleviate flooding on the golf course at Durand Eastman Park. The tributary to Sherry Swamp is responsible for flooding portions of the golf course during moderate to heavy storm events. In addition, the tributary carries a heavy sediment load which is slowly filling Sherry Swamp. The tributary, upon exiting Sherry Swamp, empties into Lake Ontario in the vicinity of the swimming beach operated by the City of Rochester.

Lu Engineers designed a project to reduce sediment deposition in Sherry Swamp, reduce golf course flooding and straighten and clean the tributary’s channel through the golf course. The design consisted of a detention basin, adjacent to the tributary, upstream of the golf course and Sherry Swamp. The area had been a low lying area years ago but had been filled over the years with soils from various County projects. A diversion structure was designed to be located in the stream channel with an overflow pipe connected to the detention basin.

The flows from storm events exceed the capacity of the opening in the sluice gate and are diverted to the detention basin. When the flow recedes, the detention basin drains back to the diversion structure and the water continues downstream. The opening on the sluice gate can be changed seasonally to accommodate changes in base stream flows.

Sediment is collected in the detention basin and provisions were made for access to remove the sediment, as necessary. The basin was planted with species native to wetland areas and a wetland seed mix was used throughout the basin. Since this section of the park has a significant number of walkers and hikers, a trail was established along the east side of the basin to accommodate the pedestrian traffic.