At a Glance

A degraded urban stream and stormwater basin becomes an ecologically robust feature in a popular community park.

Project Description

With its ballfields, swimming pool, and tennis courts, Kerruish Park is a community recreational oasis in a landscape bordered by residential development and roadways. Located on the border of Cleveland and Warrensville Heights, the park includes a densely forested area containing a large perennial stream known as Mill Creek. At some point, in an attempt to control stormwater, an earthen dam and a detention basin were created. Further work on the detention basin was completed in the early 2000’s to increase the storage. However, sedimentation, poor water quality, and fish passage through the reach are ongoing problems within the project area.

After developing a schematic design to restore 2,000 linear feet of Mill Creek, along with its riparian area, Biohabitats collaborated with the Mill Creek Watershed Partnership (MCWP), Cuyahoga County Board of Health (CCBH), and West Creek Preservation Committee (WCPC) to bring the restoration to life.

The restoration will improve fish passage over two sewer lines which are acting as lowhead dams, provide more storage by reconnecting the stream to a floodplain, and improve water quality through increasing storage on the floodplain, groundwater/surface water interactions, and instream diversity. The restoration plan also allows the wooded stream to become a safer, more engaging, and accessible recreational feature in the park.



Great Lakes

Physiographic Province

Killbuck-Glaciated Pittsburgh Plateau



Expertise Areas

Ecological Restoration, Urban Ecology


Mill Creek Watershed Partnership


Cleveland, Ohio, United States