The Ohio EPA Director and the U.S. EPA Great Lakes National Program Manager have signed a cooperative project agreement to create a plan for contaminated sediment management and habitat restoration for the Gorge Dam, which is on the Cuyahoga River in the Gorge Metro Park.
The project is being funded through the Great Lakes Legacy Act with additional project match funds provided by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. The City of Akron is the local sponsor for the state matching funds.
“This signing is the next step forward in this important project that will return the Cuyahoga River to a vibrant and free-flowing river,” said Ohio EPA Director Craig W. Butler.
“We couldn’t do this without the help of our partners, including Summit County Metro Parks, the cities of Akron and Cuyahoga Falls, Summit County, Ohio Edison, U.S. EPA and the Friends of the Crooked River.”
Akron Mayor Dan Horrigan added that “this project is a critical piece in restoring the Cuyahoga River, an important resource to Northeast Ohio, to a more natural state. This vital work is being done in conjunction with other projects that focus on the City of Akron’s long-term commitment to improve water quality for the region.”
This project agreement is the second phase of a much larger effort to remove the Gorge Dam, located on the Cuyahoga River in the cities of Akron and Cuyahoga Falls.
Ohio EPA completed the first phase in 2015, which was a cost estimate for the removal and management of sediment and removal of the dam. The third phase will involve actual sediment removal and management with the fourth phase involving removal of the dam.