The City Council voted to award the bid for dredging of Chaplin’s Lake to Merrell Bros., Inc. of Kokomo, IN for $316,400 at its meeting Dec. 12.
The out-of-state company outbid a company from Mandeville ($399,300). When asked, the company said northern lakes are frozen over and taking out-of-state jobs keeps their crew working.
Chaplin’s Lake will be dredged to 6 feet, as opposed to its current 6 inch depth at the north end that sits adjacent to the railroad tracks on University Parkway on the NSU Campus.
Sludge built up in the lake over the years, making the north end unsightly and unusable. The construction of a new clarification system at the water plant will stop the sludge from entering the water in the lake.
Work began around Jan. 19 and is estimated to last 3-4 weeks. There are three massive presses running along the banks of the lake. Pipes from the dredge pump the sediment to the presses where the water is removed. This turns the sediment into a dry, cake-like substance that’s easier to transport. One truck carries 23 yards.