A Laurel community clean-up event to remove large amounts of trash from the lower portion of Laurel Lake has been indefinitely canceled by the city’s Park and Recs department.
The Old Town Clean Up Crew, a group of local residents that meets about every five weeks between March and November to clean up a section of the city, was scheduled to have a clean-up party on March 2 at Laurel Lake.
However, due to a bad weather forecast, the crew was looking to reschedule the event later in the month. Parks and Recreation, which is responsible for maintenance of the lake, announced Monday that the event was canceled altogether. The department would not say why the event was canceled indefinitely, only saying through a city spokeswoman “They will let you know if and when [the] clean up is rescheduled.”
Laurel Lake was drained a few months ago as part of a water quality improvement project of the Clean Water Partnership and Prince George’s County.
In order to meet regulatory requirements for treating stormwater within Prince George’s County, forebays are being installed in Laurel Lake to capture sediments and other pollutants before stormwater is released into the pond, , according to a city of Laurel news release.
For the project, the lake was drained in order to install the forebays. t
As the lake was drained, the garbage in and around the lake became evident.
It was Laurel City Councilman Carl DeWalt who initially brought up the trash issue with both the city and the citizen’s group.
“I drive by there several times a week and I looked over and I saw … there was a lot of trash,” DeWalt said. “I couldn’t believe the mounds of trash, bottles, cans and signs. It was horrible, absolutely horrible.”
DeWalt said while the lake has since filled with rain water, covering a lot of the trash, there was “still plenty of trash around the edges.”