Sediment Removal In Progress at Sweetwater Wetlands Park

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB)- Every year, Sweetwater Wetlands Park undergoes an annual cleanup of sediment to keep the park healthy.

This year, the park saw more water than usual, but it's the stuff flowing in the water they're paying attention to.

Sweetwater acts as natural buffer between water flowing out of Downtown Gainesville, and into Paynes Prairie to the south. In order to preserve the habitats downstream, the manmade park requires attention.

Trash traps usually filter out the larger trash. Sediment enters a large basin. There the water slows down allowing the sediment to sink to the bottom. Geoffrey parks, the Nature Operations Supervisor at Sweetwater says the sediment is "removed periodically, so they don't go into the wetlands".

Gainesville's Public Works Department will spend the next few weeks cleaning up the sediment accumulated from the past year. Water will be diverted in the meantime so the sediment does not enter the wetlands while crews are working.

The park will remain open, but visitors should be careful crossing the service road, where their will be some increased traffic.