Wetland bids opened while FC Lake goes ‘quackers’

Shannon CareyFountain City

While Knoxville Parks & Recreation opened bids for the new wetland project set to start at Fountain City Lake this summer, drama swirled around the web-footed lake inhabitants that are both popular with the locals and heck on the water quality.

Knox TN Today got the heads up May 2, from Knoxville City Council member Mark Campen that he was planning to lead a Cub Scout troop in capturing and relocating the domestic species of ducks and geese that have made Fountain City Lake their home. The domestic waterfowl, along with wild species, sit along the west bank of the lake, waiting for a handout and coating the sidewalk with their feces.

The wild species are protected by wildlife regulations, but Campen proposed moving the domestic ducks to a local farm.

That’s when things got weird. Having kids round up the ducks was deemed too risky, both for the kids and the ducks, and the rescue was called off. Later that night, an animal rights group called Knoxville Farmed Animals Save, arrived to rescue the ducks from their erstwhile rescuers.

May 3, we got a call from Knoxville Parks & Recreation Director Joe Walsh that the low bidder on the wetland project, which is part of the ongoing effort to combat algae growth at the lake, is Ronald Franks Construction of Savannah, Tenn. Walsh said next steps are checking the company’s references and making sure all the documents are in compliance. Then, the bid will go before city council for a vote.

He hopes to see the project get started sometime in June.


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