Wood County: Commissioners hire design firm for Dry Creek project

Larry Limpf

News Editor

The Wood County commissioners have approved a resolution to fund environmental design services for a project to improve Dry Creek and adjacent areas in the Village of Walbridge.
The resolution authorizes the payment of up to $149,699 to The Mannik & Smith Group for the services. The county was awarded a federal grant to be used for the project – called the Dry Creek Ecological Design and Riparian Project – which will utilize village-owned property where the creek can be widened or possibly converted to a two-stage channel design. A two-stage ditch is formed or constructed with an inset channel in the bottom of a larger, typically trapezoidal ditch
The county engineer’s office, through its Storm Water Management Program, has determined that without restoration efforts, the on-going urbanization of the headwaters of the creek will cause ecological conditions to deteriorate. Habitat for fish and invertebrates has already been moderately impaired.
In 2018, the engineer’s office began working with the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency to identify potential projects that will improve sites in the Maumee Area of Concern. An undeveloped, 34.2-acre parcel in the village that abuts Dry Creek and sits along Walbridge Road east of East Broadway was selected.
The U.S.-Canada Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement defines Areas of Concern as “geographical areas designated by the parties where significant impairment of beneficial uses has occurred as a result of human activities at the local level.”
The Maumee Area of Concern covers about 787 square miles, including several watersheds draining to Lake Erie.
The village earlier this year approved an ordinance authorizing it to enter into the agreement with the commissioners.
Mayor Ed Kolanko said at the time that the creek – despite its name – is prone to flooding during rain storms and is plagued by blockages and debris farther downstream in Ottawa County.
According to the county engineer’s office, the goal of the project is to improve the water quality as well as flooding abatement.


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