CRANBURY – A new subcommittee will meet next week to start planning how best to address the needed dredging at Brainerd Lake, also locally called Cranbury Lake.
The lake is located near the center of downtown with the business district on its north side and mostly residential neighborhoods on the south side. Some of the homes on the south side have backyards abutting the lake’s bank. It feeds into Cranbury Brook on its west side where there is a dam. Main Street crosses over the lake.
“[Lake Brainerd] has been on the plan for seven years,” said Cranbury Mayor Jay Taylor. “We are finally making headway on it.”
The subcommittee will include a mix of residents, professionals and officials. Van Cleef Engineering Associates Inc., which provides engineering services to Cranbury, will provide one of its employees who specializes in lake dredging. Former mayor and committeewoman Susan Goetz will add her environmental experiences, Taylor said, along with a resident who has engineering experience and the Environmental Commission.
“We will have a meeting next week to kick-off the lake dredging project,” Taylor said. “We will sit down and go through the process to dredge Cranbury Lake, such as map out the timing, the steps and all that.”
He added that officials have looked into determining which types of permits are needed for the project.
“Because of the dam, we go through a different permitting process, which I’m told is a simpler process to follow instead of going through a normal lake dredging process,” Taylor said.
There is no time frame yet for when the project would start, or a determined cost.
Depending on the type and location of the body of water dredging can be done to improve navigation channels or ensure safe passage of ships. It can also be done to reduce people, fish and wildlife exposure to contaminants and prevent contaminants from spreading to other bodies of water.