PONTOON BEACH, Ill. (KSDK) - An 83-acre tract of land will serve as a protected habitat for wildlife in Pontoon Beach.
The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, HeartLands Conservancy and Collinsville Area Recreation District dedicated the Arlington Wetlands site Thursday morning.
The wetlands site is what's known in environmental parlance as a remnant oxbow, or a small, curved lake.
The HeartLands Conservancy, a not-for-profit organization, will manage the wetlands, which will provide storm water storage and clean water for surrounding wildlife.
A permeable parking lot has been built at the site, allowing rainfall to move through the lot surface instead of running off and carrying pollutants or other chemicals into lakes and streams.
A floating boardwalk has also been assembled across the open water to provide visitors access to areas they wouldn't normally have get to.