The Manlius Swan Pond was recently drained as contractors dredged the pond, part of the village’s Phase One of the Swan Pond infrastructure renovation. The pond’s inhabitants, including swans Manny and Faye and their four cygnets, were moved to the lower pond.
Manlius If you drove past the Swan Pond in Manlius in the last week, you may have noticed that it looks a little different than usual. That’s because the village has just begun Phase One of the Swan Pond infrastructure renovation.
The idea to spruce up the pond came about a year ago after the village received a $100,000 New York State parks grant. Village officials agreed it was time to fix the fence and dredge the pond, among other renovations, and put the idea out for bid to contractors in March. They spent the summer and fall nailing down exactly what changes needed to be made, and the work officially began on Oct. 29.
Although the $100,000 grant won’t cover all of the cost of the renovations, Mayor Mark- Paul Serafin said that taxpayers will not have to worry about footing the bill for this project.
“Phase One will be paid in part by the NYS Parks Matching Grant we received and by money we have budgeted in anticipation of the renovation,” he said. “The Swan Pond Committee will continue to seek out other grant opportunities as well as accept contributions to enable us to fulfill our master plan vision for the Swan Pond.”
The first phase calls for updates to existing features of the pond. In the next few months, crews will be hard at work dredging the pond, updating the electrical wiring, cleaning up the fountain and the area surrounding it, replacing the bricks that make up the path near the Pond Lookout and moving the fence closer to the water.
So why fix up the Swan Pond now? Village Parks and Recreation Director Kristen Hansen said that for the village, it’s more about keeping the park clean and well preserved than anything else.
“The last time the pond was dredged was way back in the ‘80s,” she said. “Over the years, there was just a lot of plant growth and muck. And every year, the muck in the pond was getting higher and higher, and pretty soon the swans wouldn’t be able to swim.”