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Millions in federal dollars flow into Northeast Ohio
Cleanup of West Creek watershed in Parma could become model for rain water system retrofits across the state.

Anna Staver

A Cleveland suburb could become the model for restoring watersheds across Ohio. The EPA awarded Cleveland Metroparks nearly 300-thousand dollars today (Tuesday) to restore the ecosystem of the West Creek watershed in Parma. The grant is part of a multi-million dollar federal restoration project to improve conditions in Lake Erie and Northeast Ohio waterways.

John Mack is the chief of natural resources for Cleveland Metroparks, and he says the problem in West Creek is that storm drains from Parma funnel water into a main pipe that shoots it out into the river. Mack says that destroys much of the life in the watershed. He says he hopes that the project will serve as an example to other Ohio communities with aging storm water systems.

Mack says this project could be seen as a pilot program

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“Showing that it can be done. That you can into established neighborhoods and you can retrofit them. It’s not inexpensive, but it’s not so expensive that it’s not doable.”

Mack says the grant will fund retrofitting private homes and replacing traditional curbs with ones that filter pollutants out of rain water.

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