They have spent $5,200 for devices designed to keep algae from making itself seen and smelled by visitors.
Roelkey Myers, the city’s director of Parks and Recreation, said the city has a new weapon to fight the algae blooms that rise to the top of the creek as summer approaches.
The city recently bought 56 AquaSpherePRO units, or as they are better known, ‘‘bio-balls.”
Manufactured by Minnesota-based Bioverse, the six-inch plastic balls contain plastic bags that dissolve, releasing bacteria and enzymes into the water, reducing sludge and accompanying odors.
‘‘The enzymes essentially creep out of the ball and eat the material the algae needs to survive, while keeping the water health for fish and the environment,” Myers said. ‘‘…We are hoping it starves the algae right out of the creek.”
Myers said once water temperatures reach 40 degrees over several days, park attendants will tether the balls to the bottom of the creek with weights so they float underwater. The goal is to place eight ‘‘bio-balls” every 100 feet along the creek, changing them once a month for four months.
The city also plans to use the devices in Whittier Lake, which also faces similar algae problems.
Each month, the old bio-ball is discarded and a new one is used, meaning 56 devices are needed for both bodies of water, costing the city $5,200 for the pilot program.
The city will then look to see if they want to invest in four more months of the devices to carry them into October, when cooler weather returns.
Here is a little more about the Bio-Balls if you’re interested.