Winnabow neighorhood residents concerned over neglected retention ponds

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WINNABOW, NC (WWAY) — Rod Roberts has lived in the Westport neighborhood for more than 16 years. He hopes to pass his house down to his family, but worries if the retention pond behind his house isn’t cleaned and fixed, that might not be an option.

“There are 10 ponds in Westport,” said Roberts. “One pond, pond six up near the clubhouse. They’ve aerated, they’ve landscaped, they’ve given it the proper maintenance, and it’s beautiful. So we want it to be fair and equal.”

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Roberts said fish have died in the ponds several times because they’re overrun with algae and pollution, and lack oxygen. He and other neighbors have brought it up to the Westport HOA every year for ten years, with little to no luck.

“I’ve been told I shouldn’t look at the pond,” said Roberts. “I’ve been told by the board president that I shouldn’t have built a house by the pond. But how can you not look at the pond when it surrounds your house?”

He’s not the only one worried. Carolina Pond and Stormwater owner, Scott Blevins said it looks like the pond is older, and not built the same as newer Brunswick County retention ponds. If left unchecked, it could cause serious problems.

“If you dig a hole and it fills with water, in ten years you’ll have a swamp,” said Blevins. “Certainly that harbors a lot of wildlife that’s less than pleasing as well as mosquito habitat and things of that nature.”

Blevins said excess algae can take up more room in retention ponds, leading to potential erosion and making it a flooding hazard.

“If those ponds are full of vegetation, whether it be invasive like spikerush or just simply algae, then that’s less volume you have for storm water control during an actual storm event.”