Redwood City dredging lagoon to improve water flow 

Almost every day for the next six weeks, Carole Wong will wake up in her Redwood Shores home to the sound of heavy machinery cleaning the bottom of the lagoons.

Though the 55-year-old resident said the work can be a nuisance, she said getting the lagoons clean is a priority.

“I hear it all the time,” Wong said. “Some people see it as an annoyance, but when the other alternative is not having the lagoon dredged and the water level higher, this is a temporary inconvenience.”

Redwood City officials have begun cleaning the bottom of the lagoons to remove silt and grass buildup that will allow water to flow in and out of San Francisco Bay easier.

Work began in December and is expected to last through February, Redwood City spokesman Malcolm Smith said.

An estimated 21,000 cubic yards of silt is expected to be removed from the lagoons, Smith said. That silt will be pumped from the water and moved through a rubber pipe along the shore to a barge near Bair Island Marina.

When the pipe is laid, Smith said, property owners are asked to refrain from using boats from personal docks for fear of ripping or tearing the pipe.

Smith said he could not recall when the lagoons were previously dredged. The maintenance is estimated to cost $700,000.

Doug Crisman, president of the Redwood Shores Community Association, said boaters and those who use the water are affected by the work.

“There’s always going to be an inconvenience because it does block access,” Crisman said. “But it’s winter, and it’s raining. If they’re going to do it, now seems like the best time.”

Community meetings were held about the dredging and the need to use caution during this time because of a rubber pipe that carries the mud and soot out of the lagoon could easily be damaged by a personal boat or kayak.

Wong said she does own a boat and kayaks for use in the lagoons.

Recently, Wong said, a Stanford rowing team was practicing in the lagoon and she noticed it was headed toward the rubber pipe.

“I knew [a team member’s] cell phone and called him,” Wong said. “He said they had already noticed it. So they turned around and practiced in another area.”

Raking up the muck

21,000: Cubic yards of silt to be removed

$700,000: Estimated cost of project

2: Main work areas near Shorebird Island and Laguna Point

Source: Redwood City

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