Summit Metro Parks Launches Its Next Step in the Gorge Dam Removal Process

Mar 29, 2018

The former Ohio Edison dam is the largest remaining barrier to a free-flowing Cuyahoga River. A hydrology study underway will model the impact of its removal on infrastructure and habitats.
Credit JEFF ST.CLAIR / WKSU

Summit Metro Parks is moving forward with the next step in the process to remove the largest remaining dam on the Cuyahoga River.

The 60-foot-tall Gorge Dam in Cuyahoga Falls once powered trolley cars in Akron.

The park’s head of natural resources management, Mike Johnson, says the $70,000 hydrology study will model the effect of a free-flowing river.

“We need to look at the possible impacts to property and infrastructure, bridges for instance, if that water is suddenly no longer there."

Johnson says the results of the hydrology study won’t be ready until the end of the year.

The Ohio EPA is negotiating with the federal EPA to secure funding for the $65 million removal project. The state says the century-old, former hydroelectric dam needs to be removed to improve water quality in the Cuyahoga River.