A major dredging project is under way in Pasco County.

  • City using $100,000 to fund project; hope it's finished in February
  • Orange Lake Park one of New Port Richey's top attractions
  • Dredging will remove 3,600 cubic yards of sediment from lake

It all centers around a lake residents say is in desperate need of a cleaning.

Orange Lake Park is one of the main attractions in New Port Richey. Even in the cold, it draws a crowd.

"There's walking, the kids can have a great time," said resident Pat Wells. "They have great concerts, outside movies many Saturdays a year."

There are a few new temporary additions -- pipes and a barge. It means the long-awaited dredging of Orange Lake is getting under way.

Residents say it's about time.

"At some point, it was looking really dirty," Wells said. "The water level was not as high and stuff like that."

The work includes hydraulic dredging that will remove 3,600 cubic yards of sediment from the lake.

That will help remove pollution from the water. It will get put across the street and then permanently removed.

"They're getting rid of the silk and the mud," said resident Cliff Hirsh. "For the wild life here, I'm glad they're doing things."

The project also will include the installation of pollution control structures that will help keep the water clean.

The city is using $100,000 they got from the BP oil spill to fund the dredging project.

Crews hope to have it finished by the end of February.