LODI, Ohio — As part of Gov. Mike Dewine's H2Ohio initiative the Medina County Park District and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources announced a third wetland project which the two organizations will collaborate on.
The project is for 173 acres, which will become the site of the new Little Killbuck Creek Wetlands.
“This is the latest example of how the H2Ohio initiative continues to expand and grow to serve the people of Ohio,” DeWine said in a news release. “All the work we’ve done and continue to do is to ensure that future generations have a clean, reliable water supply.”
The project will help restore at least 55 acres of wetland at the site and provide nutrient reduction, water quality improvements and close a major point of weakness between the Mississippi Rivers Basin and the Great Lakes.
“We are really excited to add to the growing list of H2Ohio wetlands and share the benefits of these projects with everyone in Ohio,” ODNR Director Mary Mertz said in a news release. “Each new project strengthens our efforts to ensure that communities in Ohio have safe, clean water."
Nearly 70% of the property is within the FEMA 100-year floodplain which currently connects the Lake Erie Basin to the Ohio River Basin and is poses a risk for the movement of aquatic invasive specifies.
The park district and ODNR will build an interceptor berm to prevent the passage of invasive carp species through the flood zone of Little Killbuck Creek to the Great Lakes Basin.
Nearby, 74 species of birds including the state-endangered Northern Harrier and the state-threatened Trumpeter Swan have been documented in fields by the wetlands.
“We’re actively preserving what people love about Medina County,” Director of Medina County Park District Nathan D. Eppink said. “The H2Ohio program has been a big part of our recent success, and we’re excited to bring this new property into the park district.”
Medina County Park District received a $900,000 H2Ohio grant to purchase the property. Previously, the park district received a $1.52 million H2Ohio grant to restore three areas near Chippewa Lake, including the former Chippewa Lake Amusement Park and a $900,000 H2Ohio grant to restore 145 acres in Litchfield Township.
For more information on the H2Ohio initiative, click here.