GARFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio — About two miles upstream from Cuyahoga County’s tallest waterfall, Mill Creek zigzags under Broadway Avenue. The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) wants to remake two short, low bridges on Broadway and fight erosion in Mill Creek below. These bridges will take years to rebuild, but to ODOT at least, that work is entirely necessary.
The creek is one of the bigger waterways in eastern Cuyahoga, wending 12.2 miles and draining about 19 square miles. Erosion is a major concern for the creek, as it is for many waterways across the country. ODOT now hopes that these bridge projects will help slow down the advance of this problem.
Broadway Bridges Project Still in Early Stages
The construction work is scheduled for 2020, but ODOT needs to invite public comment now under rules for parklands. Still, officials from ODOT, the Cleveland Metroparks, and Cleveland City Hall say the project won’t interfere with park habitats or activities. Construction vehicles will be stored and staged near the bridges.
The project requires ODOT to take over a fraction of an acre of nearby land. It also has to gain the rights to two other fractions. At no charge, the department will get 4,212 square feet square from the park. Simultaneously, it will gain easement rights to another 3,009 square feet. ODOT will also gain a temporary right of way to 1,203 square feet of land owned by Cleveland.
Crews hired by ODOT will replace the bridges’ railings, surfaces, and bases. They’ll also repair stream erosion and protect the banks with rocks. They hope these improvements will significantly improve the creek for years to come. After all, these repairs are time and cost-consuming.
The public may submit comments by May 5 to ODOT’s Mark Alan Carpenter, district environmental engineer, 550 Transportation Blvd., Garfield Heights, OH 44125.