Detention Basins

A detention pond is a low lying area that is designed to temporarily hold a set amount of water while slowly draining to another location. They are more or less around for flood control when large amounts of rain could cause flash flooding.
A retention pond is designed to hold a specific amount of water indefinitely. Usually the pond is designed to have drainage leading to another location when the water level gets above the pond capacity, but still maintains a certain capacity.

A water detention pond, by definition, detains water. When an area is paved, or covered with a building, water runs off the property much faster than when it is in a natural state. The total amount of discharge is the same, but the discharge happens over a shorter amount of time. A hydrologist will design a water detention pond to temporarily detain the water and keep the runoff to the desired rate. When the rain ends, though, the water detention pond will be empty shortly afterwards.

A water retention pond, on the other hand, retains water all the time. The pond level may go up and down, but ordinarily the pond has some water in it. So, if the pond is typically empty except during and shortly after rain or other precipitation, it is a detention pond. If the pond always has water in it, then it is a retention pond.

Ponds exist in order to help control potential flooding from storm water runoff and to help improve the water quality that leads into streams. Homeowners' associations and business owners are responsible for maintaining their detention basins. Detention basins require maintenance to ensure that they function properly. Some subdivisions have established Special Assessment Districts also known as (SAD) to fund the maintenance of a detention basin, pumps (as required), and drain system. These funds are assessed to the property taxes each year of every home/property owner within the subdivision for the sole purpose of maintaining the detention system that regulates the storm water for that subdivision. Ponds and systems funded by an SAD are normally maintained through your local municipality.

A wetland is an area of land that is saturated with water for at least part of the year and contains plants and animals that are adapted to live in these wet conditions. A wetland is also known as a swamp, bog, or marsh. You may even have some wetlands in your area.

What is a Detention Basin?

What are the different types of detention ponds?

How are detention basins maintained?

How should detention basins be inspected?

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