Did you know that there are about 350 storm water detention facilities in Lombard? These include ponds, wetlands, dry basins, a few parking lots, and underground chambers. They all provide the vital function of holding heavy rainfalls and draining slowly to help avoid surcharging (overfilling) the Village’s storm and combined sewers. The Village owns just a minority of these facilities. The Village’s ponds include Terrace View Pond, Vista Pond, Morris Pond, and the Village Municipal Complex Pond. The Lombard Park District also owns a few ponds. The Village’s wetlands and dry basins are at Main & Wilson, Grace & Central, Finley & Charles Lane, Hammerschmidt School, and the Surges Center on North Garfield. Privately owned storm water detention facilities are inspected by the Village’s Community Development Department every five years for safety and function.
The Best Management Practice for vegetating storm water facilities is native plants. Compared to turf grass, native plants discourage resident geese, filter more pollutants out of storm water, reduce air/noise pollution from no mowing, reduce erosion due to longer roots, and provide a livelier habitat. In especially wet basins, mowing is difficult due to mud and cattails often become prominent. Although not native, cattails are difficult to eliminate and are generally accepted as higher value than mowed grass for dissuading geese, reducing pollution, eliminating standing water that could allow mosquito breeding, and providing habitat for birds. As budget and resources allow, the Village conducts controlled burns, applies herbicide, cuts woody plants, runs aerators, and uses environmentally safe algae control chemicals to promote healthy and diverse ecosystems.