At a Glance

The restoration of 1,175 linear feet of stream and 2.8 acres of riparian and wetland habitat enhance the ecology, beauty, and recreational opportunities of a newly created public park.

Project Description

In 2014, the City of Mentor acquired a 56-acre property with the intent of transforming it into passive, recreational park known as Springbrook Gardens Park. The City also received a grant from the Ohio EPA to restore a channelized ditch that flowed through the park and create a stream/wetland complex. To lead the restoration design, they turned to Biohabitats.

The ditch, known as Wayside Gardens, is a tributary to Marsh Creek, which flows directly into Ohio’s first State Nature Preserve, Mentor Marsh. Located adjacent to Lake Erie, Mentor Marsh is also a National Natural Landmark. Over past decades, as the watershed developed and stormwater runoff increased, the tributary became disconnected from its floodplain and suffered diminished water quality.

Working with the City and its project partners, the Chagrin River Watershed Partners and the Lake County Soil and Water Conservation District, Biohabitats developed a restoration strategy that took advantage of the high sand content in the site’s soil. The approach combines riffle complexes and sand seepage berms that extend valley wide, perpendicular to the stream’s flow. These complexes retain smaller storm events on the floodplain–allowing for denitrification as the water seeps through the sand/mulch berms–while safely conveying larger storm events through the site. The use of a native plant palette and the treatment of invasive species also helped improve riparian habitat.

The design not only improves the quality of water entering Mentor Marsh and Lake Erie, it also creates a biodiverse, ecologically functioning stream and wetland complex that enhances the park.

Details

Bioregion

Great Lakes

Physiographic Province

Erie Lake Plain

Watershed

Marsh Creek

Expertise Areas

Community, Design & Build, Ecological Restoration, Urban Ecology

Owner

The City of Mentor Ohio

Location

Mentor, Ohio, United States

Project Team
  • Meadville Land Service
  • Chagrin Valley Engineering
  • ASC Group
  • Crowley's Vegetation Control