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Published: Monday, 11/12/2012

Park district completes stream restoration project

BY KELLY McLENDON
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Bryan Davis drives as Josh Neuman stabilizes the water tank and Jordan Enis waters plantings in the newly widened ditch at Sylvan Prairie Park. The project is to aid in flood control. Bryan Davis drives as Josh Neuman stabilizes the water tank and Jordan Enis waters plantings in the newly widened ditch at Sylvan Prairie Park. The project is to aid in flood control.
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A con­ser­va­tion proj­ect that fea­tures an ex­tra-wide ditch at Olander Park System’s Syl­van Prai­rie Park in Syl­va­nia is be­ing touted as a way to pro­mote stream res­tora­tion.

Erika Buri, park con­ser­va­tion man­ager, said the ditch will show what can be done to ad­dress lo­cal storm­wa­ter and en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues.

The park sys­tem con­ducted a smaller, trial proj­ect on an­other ditch, near the north end of Syl­van Prai­rie Park be­fore pur­su­ing the cur­rent proj­ect, funded with a $185,000 award from an Ohio EPA pro­gram.

Although mod­eled af­ter the first proj­ect, the larger proj­ect has many dif­fer­ences.

The ini­tial proj­ect was about 100 lin­ear feet, and the new proj­ect is about 3,000, Ms. Buri said.

She ex­plained that it will widen the ditch to cre­ate a func­tional flood­plain and help with storm­wa­ter re­ten­tion. If a flood oc­curs, the chan­nel can hold five times its cur­rent ca­pac­ity.

“It re­duces flood­ing fur­ther down the stream,” she said.

Na­tive plants have been planted to help sta­bi­lize the bank. Rather than put­ting in rocks, “we’re go­ing to widen the base of the ditch and cre­ate kind of a lin­ear wet­land,” she said.

The base of the ditch will be in­creased to 30 feet, forc­ing the stream to form its own chan­nel.

The health of the stream is de­pen­dent on el­e­ments such as sed­i­ment and nu­tri­ent trap­ping, Ms. Buri said.

Proj­ect part­ners in­clude the Lu­cas Soil and Water Con­ser­va­tion Dis­trict and the Lu­cas County Engi­neer’s Of­fice, both of which have do­nated time and plan­ning work.

D&K Ex­ca­vat­ing of Per­rys­burg re­cently was awarded the con­tract for the work.

Syl­va­nia Northview High School stu­dents in Tami Blue’s in­ter­ac­tive me­dia class have de­signed in­ter­pre­tive signs to ed­u­cate the pub­lic about the site.

“They talk about what kind of fish spe­cies live in that stream,” Ms. Buri said, add­ing that many of the fish are small spe­cies.

 



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