Golf course pond dredging projects can add volume to irrigation ponds and also fill unacceptable fairway grades. In the Northeast, fairways cut into slopes often result in uneven landing areas and frayed golfer nerves. Older courses suffer depressions caused by decaying stumps used for fill. Others want to install fill to hide rock outcroppings.
Clients usually hire engineers experienced in marine work to guide the permit process. The engineers usually hire a survey team to generate a pre-construction topographical drawing of the pond that is added to a Cad file. An irrigation analysis will identify current water needs. The engineer will calculate the desired new pond volume then develop a dredge profile and calculate the dredge volume.
While performing the pre-construction survey, it’s good practice to extract and test pond soil samples. Testing will identify hazardous chemicals and also fulfill basic permitting criteria. The testing will also guide dredge disposal. If the dredge has a hazardous component, the regulatory authorities will require expensive off-site disposal. If the dredge is devoid of harmful substances it can be used as golf course fill.
When placing dredge on golf course fairways or rough it’s important to dewater. Dewatering occurs best in 12” thick layers. Dredge piled high will take time to dry. Placing wet dredge near golf fairways in season will create unsettled ground and angry customers. I recommend transporting the dredge to an on-site dump and construct slopes that will divert dredge liquid away from the pile and the access road.
After the dredge dries, treat it like regular fill. Check the organic composition before placing; the dredge may work as topsoil. If it’s too sandy, surface the dredge with suitable topsoil. I’m now looking at a job that will result in a deeper irrigation pond and the placement of 5500 cubic yards of dredge that the owner will use to fill a fairway depression.