Create an Account - Increase your productivity, customize your experience, and engage in information you care about.
Visit neorsd.org/shakerlakes to view the June 15 presentation, an additional video about the recommendations for Horseshoe Lake, and other information, including the slide deck. If you still have questions about the recommendations, please email email@example.com.
Show All Answers
NEORSD’s restoration of the Doan Brook to its natural state will result in a new and more natural greenspace for the community. Residents are encouraged to view NEORSD’s June 15 presentation or this video, which provides an overview of the recommendations and examples of NEORSD’s stream restoration work, including the complete restoration of the Doan Brook in University Circle near the Cleveland Museum of Art.
This new greenspace will provide an opportunity to create a new recreational amenity for the community to enjoy. The City is committed to working with residents through a public process to explore the possibilities for this new amenity; the City is also committed to seeking funding to help bring the community’s vision to reality.
Yes. A walking path will remain.
The park will not change. Picnic pavilions, the playground, and the pathways will remain.
NEORSD is committed to paying $28.3 million to remove the dam at Horseshoe Lake, restore the stream bed and construct a new dam at Lower Lake and some maintenance costs for both Horseshoe Lake and Lower Lake.
The breakdown of costs is $13.6 million for the Lower Lake improvements and $14.7 million for the Horseshoe Lake improvements. These improvements would be funded through NEORSD's regional stormwater management program due to the regional benefits that the improvements provide. Note: NEORSD will not contribute $14.7 million to the cities to offset the cost to rebuild a dam at Horseshoe Lake because their studies have determined there is no significant regional stormwater benefit to keeping the dam and therefore Horseshoe Lake.
The cost to the City will be zero. The Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District (NEORSD) will fund the entire cost of its recommended plan for Horseshoe Lake and Lower Lake through its Regional Stormwater Management Program. The estimated cost is $28.3 million. This program is funded through stormwater fees on monthly sewer bills paid by residents in NEORSD’s 60-plus member communities. Learn more at neorsd.org/shakerlakes.
NEORSD’s Regional Stormwater Management Program addresses problems related to stormwater runoff from hard surfaces. Runoff contributes to regional stream flooding, erosion, and water-quality issues, and the Program works to address stormwater problems that cross community boundaries. Due to the impacts downstream of flooding in the Shaker Lakes, this project is covered under the Regional Stormwater Management Program.
The estimated cost to rebuild Horseshoe Lake dam and manage the sediment is $20.7 million. This is not something that NEORSD would contribute regional stormwater management dollars toward because it does not align with their goals. This entire cost would be borne by the cities of Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights. In addition, there would be ongoing costs related to dam maintenance and sediment removal that would be the responsibility of the cities.
The cost for this is estimated to be $34.3 million, which is beyond the funding ability of NEORSD and is not an option being offered. In this scenario (rebuild the dams and manage sediment at both lakes), the cost for Lower Lake improvements are estimated to be $13.6 million and would be NEORSD funded due to the flooding benefits they provide. The costs for constructing a new dam at Horseshoe Lake and managing the sediment are estimated at $20.7 million. As explained in this FAQ and during NEORSD's June 15 presentation, lacking tangible flood control benefits, NEORSD regional stormwater management dollars could not be utilized to build a new dam at Horseshoe and manage the resulting sediment accumulation. As such, the needed $20.7 million would need to come from the municipalities.
No. NEORSD can only fund work that aligns with the goals of the Regional Stormwater Management Program. As such, it would not be able to divert the $14.7 million to help fund the rebuilding of the dam at Horseshoe Lake. The City of Shaker Heights and the City of Cleveland Heights would be responsible for the entire $20.7 million estimated cost of rebuilding the dam, plus ongoing maintenance costs.
In spring 2019, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) determined that the existing Horseshoe Lake Dam was structurally deficient. As a Class 1 dam, a sudden failure of Horseshoe Lake Dam could cause significant property damage and potential loss of life downstream. For this reason, ODNR directed the City to almost fully drain Horseshoe Lake and keep it drained.
NEORSD has conducted preliminary environmental assessments of the sediment at Horseshoe Lake. Residents can learn more from the June 15 presentation (sediment is discussed at 45 minutes and again at 45:07). Residents can email NEORSD for additional information.
NEORSD dredged, then rebuilt the spillway and pedestrian bridge at Green Lake at a cost of approximately $5 million funded by stormwater management program dollars. The City also contributed $500,000 to the dredging of the lake. This was an early project in NEORSD's stormwater management program. Residents with specific questions about the Green Lake project can contact NEORSD directly.
The Shaker Parklands (which include Lower Lake and Horseshoe Lake and their surrounding parks) are owned by the City of Cleveland and leased to the Cities of Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights.
In 1990-1991, both cities entered into 50 year leases, which may be renewed at each city’s option under the same terms for an additional 50 years.
Under the terms, the lease explicitly states that the Parklands must be used “for park, boulevard and recreational purposes only.”
Further, it must be open to the public free of charge: “Shaker Heights shall ensure that the entire Leased Premises remain open for use as a public park by all persons without reference to place of residence, at all times (subject only to reasonable park opening and closing hours) without payment of a fee or other consideration to Shaker Heights or any agent, licensee or sublessee thereof. Shaker Heights shall not close or deprive the public of access to the Leased Premises or any part thereof, except to the extent necessary for improvement and maintenance.”
Further, a portion of the Parklands is in the flood plain which would limit any development potential.
Posted July 22 in response to a question submitted for the August 9 public meeting.
The Cities of Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights have rights and responsibilities for the parks, including the lakes and dams, under a lease with the City of Cleveland. Both cities would have to give approval to NEORSD to remove the dam.
Posted August 5 in response to question submitted for August 9 public meeting.
Based on what we currently know about the ongoing deterioration of the dams and the ongoing serious threat to public safety and property, the expert analysis by NEORSD and ODNR and others, the environmental benefits and support of various environmental groups (e.g. Shaker Nature Center, Doan Brook Watershed Partnership), and the costs estimates to restore and maintain the lake into the future, NEORSD’s recommended plan is worthy of serious consideration. However, before the cities make a final decision the investigation and analysis of various factors, including the public’s questions, and the answers to those questions will be taken into consideration.
Posted August 6 in response to question submitted for August 9 public meeting.
Ultimately, funding decisions are in the purview of City Council as part of the budget process. The cost estimates to rebuild the Horseshoe Lake dam and repair the lake are very significant at approximately $20.7 million. In addition, there are ongoing maintenance cost for the foreseeable future. At this time, the City's budget does not comtemplate these costs and we do not currently have a sustainable source of revenues for these costs.
A market analysis, benefit-cost analysis, or similar study would be required to evaluate the impact on property values. Any such study would also need to consider the positive impact of the proposed improvements to the area. The City has not engaged such a study at this time.
We are open to all resident input. Any decision relating to this matter will made after taking into consideration numerous factors including citizen viewpoints.
The City places a high value on aquatic and bird life. Any decision relating to this matter will made after taking into consideration numerous factors including the desire to protect aquatic and bird life.
The recommendation to remove the dam at Horseshoe should not be interpreted as it being 'less worthy' of repair. Currently, NEORSD has flood control benefit data about Horseshoe and Lower Lake as well as the entire Doan Brook Watershed. NEORSD's Stormwater Master Plan utilizes this data, analysis and guidance in making its recommendations. The Doan Brook Stormwater Master Plan was not complete when NEORSD repaired Green Lake, and at that point in time ODNR-identified deficiencies needed to be addressed regarding the Green Lake spillway.
This question is answered here: https://www.shakeronline.com/FAQ.aspx?QID=657
Posted August 3 in response to a question submitted for the August 9 public meeting.
A benefit-cost analysis or similar study would be required for an in-depth evaluation of project costs. The City has not undertaken such a study at this time. However, it is recognized that the site is a significant historic and environmental feature for the National Register Historic District, and the Section 106 process will help establish a balance between changes to the property and protection of existing historical and cultural value.
It also recognized that the property is currently a significant recreational amenity for the community. Rather than a permanent closure, the intent of the project is to create a new recreational amenity for the community to enjoy.
This question is answered here: https://www.shakeronline.com/FAQ.aspx?QID=662
Posted August 4 in response to a question submitted for the August 9 public meeting.
Yes. The walkway around the lake will remain. We expect the walkway connecting North and South Park will be rebuilt in some form. Resident input about the walkway and other possible amenities will be considered during the design phase. Please note: The current walkway will remain closed until further notice due to deteriorating and dangerous conditions.
There will be a public process to determine the amenities residents would like to see in this new community greenspace. The City is committed to seeking funding to make the community's vision a reality.
This question is answered in the following FAQs:
NEORSD has confirmed that the cherry grove is outside of this project scope and work zone. It will be protected during the project.
Complete question: Have the Cities of Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights and those planning the future of Horseshoe Lake considered the effect of proposed changes to the lake and dam on the designation of Shaker Village Historic District as a district on the US National Register of Historic Places?
Answer: The Shaker Village National Register Historic District encompasses approximately 75% of the City of Shaker Heights. Horseshoe Lake is included within the District’s boundary and considered one of many contributing properties to the historic designation. The project will not result in a change to the designation of the National Register Historic District.
During previous planning efforts NEORSD consulted with the Ohio Historic Preservation Office (OHPO) and determined that any work to reconstruct or remove the dam would result in an "adverse effect" (as defined by applicale law and regulations). NEORSD has an executed Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) addressing the potential adverse effects, including mitigation, with plans to be adjusted accordingly as revised design plans progress.
The Doan Brook is classified a jurisdictional water of the U.S. and therefore will require a federal permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) as part of the dam removal project. It is through this permitting process that USACE will facilitate Section 106 coordination with OHPO.
As previously mentioned (see https://www.shakeronline.com/FAQ.aspx?QID=698), NEORSD entered into an MOA addressing adverse effects to the NRHP properties and will make adjustments as design progresses.
Posted August 6 in response to question to submitted for August 9 public meeting.
The City has not notified or consulted with the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP) but during the previous work NEORSD notified ACHP of the adverse effects at the Horseshoe dam site and they declined to participate in the previously executed MOA. All consulting parties, including ACHP, will be reengaged during the MOA amendment process.
The City has not notified or consulted with the Ohio Historic Preservation Office (OHPO).However, during the previous work NEORSD coordinated with OHPO regarding the adverse effects at the Horseshoe dam site and executed an MOA.
As mentioned here (https://www.shakeronline.com/FAQ.aspx?QID=700), USACE is the lead federal agency that facilitates OHPO coordination. A nationwide permit (NWP) from USACE will be required based on NEORSD's recommendation. However, NEORSD cannot apply for a NWP until a design is well underway. At that time, the prescribed OHPO coordination will occur, and the MOA will be modified.
The City has not notified or consulted with the Cleveland Restoration Society. During the previous NEORSD work they were not on the list of potential consulting parties. The initial list was developed under the guidance of the USACE, and NEORSD included all recommended parties. A Public Notice was issued by the USACE upon determination of an adverse effect to historic properties, and Cleveland Restoration Society did not provide any comments.
Complete question: Please explain in detail all such historical planning, consultation and research to date or anticipated including all possible effects in particular the impact proposed changes to the lake and dam would have on the economic market value of all properties within the historic district.
Answer: NEORSD Efforts: In 2016, a Phase I Cultural Resources Management (CRM) Survey and Geophysical Survey was conducted at the Horseshoe Lake Dam site. Through the permitting process for the previous work, Section 106 consultation was completed. Consulting parties were identified and engaged. An MOA was executed, and mitigation requirements were established. In addition to the required mitigation, the NEORSD electively initiated a Historic American Engineering Record (HAER), which combines drawings, history, and photographs to produce a comprehensive, multidisciplinary record of the structure. The NEORSD anticipates additional coordination with OHPO and the consulting parties as the design moves forward, and is working closely with Lawhon & Associates to ensure all historical requirements are met.. NEORSD also intends to hire a landscape architecture professional to assist with the project that recognizes the historic value and significance of the area.
A market analysis, benefit-cost analysis, or similar study would be required to evaluate the impact on adjacent property values. The City does not intend to undertake such a study.
Complete question: Even when Horseshoe Dam was functioning, I have seen large storms overwhelm the culvert where Doan Brook crosses South Park Blvd. With Horseshoe Dam removed, this culvert will see more intense unmoderated peak flows. Does it need to be reevaluated or modified, and by whom? (Similar question for the Lee Road culvert.)
Answer: NEORSD is aware of the conveyance issues related to the South Park Blvd culvert. NEORSD will be developing alternatives to address this conveyance issue as part of the Horseshoe Lake dam removal engineering design study. The Doan Brook subwatershed model indicates that the Lee Road culvert, immediately downstream of Horseshoe Lake dam, does not overtop.
Complete question: Don't destroy the Shaker Lakes! I was one of the original founders of the Nature Center, along with my brother Rick Sahley. Why not restore the dams using the same materials which have lasted for a hundred and seventy-five to a hundred and eighty five years? It could be done as a historical project, perhaps with the help of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, or even from private donations! The overblown costs are for payments to corrupt contractors, they are fake numbers.
Answer: Horseshoe Dam does not meet the current dam safety standards for a Class I dam. ODNR Dam Safety Program requires modern engineering and materials specifications to ensure public health and safety is met per the Ohio Revised Code.
Yes. The walkway around the lake will remain. We expect the walkway connecting North and South Park will be rebuilt in some form. Resident input about the walkway during the design phase will be considered. Please note: The existing walkway currently is and will remain closed until further notice due to deteriorating and dangerous existing conditions.
Posted on August 4 in response to question submitted for the August 9 meeting.
Posted August 4 in response to question submitted for the August 9 public meeting.
The rocks (grouted or ungrouted) are not a sufficient measure to prevent the continued seepage which is weakening the dam or leading to potential failure during an overtopping event. The dam is an earthen dam running from North Park Blvd. to South Park Blvd. Extensive engineered measures, which involve complete replacement of the masonry spillway, are required to comply with State of Ohio Dam Safety Regulations for a Class I dam.
The identified voids are in the vicinity of the spillway structure. Voids can occur anywhere along the earthen dam and there is no current technology that can identify all the voids with any high degree of confidence.
$10 million was estimated to dredge the entire lake to an 8’ depth. This does not bring the lake to its originally constructed depth. The upcoming design effort will refine quantities and estimates and develop a plan for sediment management.
Various configurations of new spillway structures and overtopping protection for the earthen dam were evaluated. Repair or rehabilitation of the existing spillway is not feasible due to the original masonry construction and extensive voids that have been discovered. The existing spillway can only pass 6% of the required design flood for a Class I dam.
Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) are only required on Federal projects per the 1969 National Environmental Policy Act. This is not a Federal project and an EIS is not required. However, this project will require Federal permitting through the Army Corps. Of Engineers.
Complete question: Residents rely on the trails surrounding Horseshoe Park for fitness and transportation. Breaking the loop around the park by eliminating the dam and spillway will force residents to rely on Park Drive and Lee Road, which are more dangerous and less scenic. Will the city fund both a temporary and, eventually, permanent bridge over the marshland (the former lake) to facilitate use of this important space that Shaker residents have fought hard for, treasured, and grown accustomed to?
Answer: Yes. The walkway around the lake will remain. We expect the walkway connecting North and South Park will be rebuilt in some form. Resident input about the walkway during the design phase will be considered. Please note: The existing walkway currently is and will remain closed until further notice due to deteriorating and dangerous existing conditions.
There will be public engagement around the restoration of the Doan Brook at Horseshoe Lake, which could include what this new greenspace should be named.
Complete question: Past circumstances led Horseshoe Lake to be classified as a Class 1 dam. Given NEORSD’s reworking of the Lower Lake dam, if non NEORSD funds are raised to pay for it, can Horseshoe Lake be rebuit as a Class 4 dam (in other words, 50 acre feet or less and therefore exempt from permit requirements and related costs)? If not, why?
Answer: Per ODNR regulations, a dam is exempt from jurisdiction if it is 6 feet or less in height regardless of storage volume; less than 10 feet in height with no more than 50 acre-feet of total storage volume, or not more than 15 acre-feet of total storage volume regardless of height. The current dam height is 29'. The existing, approximately 20 feet of sediment depth within the Lake would need to be addressed (removed) to lower the dam height to 6 feet, or lowered to 10 feet in height if impounding less than 50 acre-feet of storage volume. Either dam lowering scenario (to a height of 6 feet or less, or 10 feet) would require full dam replacement and significant sediment removal. Lake sediment deposit removal greater than approximately 8 feet in depth was not cost estimated by NEORSD.
A rebuilt Horseshoe Lake (meeting the ODNR requirements @$20.7 million) would have the same amount of active storage volume as the existing Horseshoe Lake, with an average depth of 8 feet . The Stormwater Master Plan analysis found that the active storage volume has no tangible downstream flood control benefit.
NEORSD has investigated federal and state grant funding programs and determined that limited to no grant dollars are programmed for hazard dam replacement.
Complete question: Are the cities of Cleveland Heights and Shaker Heights willing to seek alternative funding sources to save Horseshoe Lake by rebuilding the dam and committing to its ongoing maintenance before committing to moving ahead with the NEORSD’s plan?
Answer: Based on years of experience seeking outside funding sources and grants, the City of Shaker Heights does not believe funds are available to cover the cost to rebuild the dam, dredge the lake, and maintain both in perpetuity. In addition, because of the ongoing deterioration and the serious threat to life and property, the need to mitigate the risk and find a permanent solution is immediate and urgent.
NEORSD has investigated federal and state grant funding programs and determined that limited to no grant dollars are programmed for hazard dam replacement.
Complete question: NEORSD cited cost for Horseshoe of $6 mil, then $20 mil in a clarification response; then Cleveland.com story cites $30 mil. We need independent cost assessment. The lake has been drained for 2 yrs, so why the pressure to proceed before real costs can be assessed and funding sought? Also, no lake will mean less appeal, less visitation, fewer bird species, lower property values, and potential crime without visibility from the street.
Answer: The dam is in active failure mode and necessitates prompt action. NEORSD's proposed plan includes removal of the dam at Horseshoe Lake, full restoration of Doan Brook and eventual replacement of the dam at Lower Lake. The cost for this plan is $28.3 million as presented to the communities during the June 2021 joint municipal public meetings. To replace the dam at Horseshoe Lake, the estimated cost is $20.7 million, plus annual maintenance costs, borne by the Cities of Shaker and Cleveland Heights. NEORSD can not fund this solution due to insignificant flood control and regional stormwater benefit to the region. The eventual replacement of Lower Lake's dam is $13.6 million; this is how the cleveland.com story cited a $34.3 million cost for replacement of both dams ($20.7M + $13.6M = $34.3M).
Complete question: Why so much money? From my past recollection of 3 yrs. ago, NEOSD advised that fixing the dam & watershed issue at Horseshoe Lake would cost $6M. As part of that discussion, NEOSD would pick up the tab. Now, with a drained lake, NEOSD states that the cost of fixing the dam would be in excess of $21M. AND, even though Customers in NEO have been paying 3-times what was assessed prior to ‘Save the Watershed’, we [Shaker Hts & Cle Hts] are told that “you [S.H. & C.H.] need to pick up the
Answer: The initial estimate involved repairs to the existing spillway and the installation of overtopping protection. The worsening dam conditions around the spillway caused a reassessment that dam reconstruction or dam removal were the only options to ensure public health and safety. As part of the reassessment, sediment testing and analysis indicated the need for extensive sediment handling and removal to facilitate either dam reconstruction or dam removal.
Complete question: I have reviewed the NEORSD video on Horseshoe Lake and appreciate the recommendations. Green Lake is lovely now, but the trees surrounding most of the public part of it greatly limit our ability to see it. Are they necessary for the health of the lake and environment? Or could they be thinned some and other riparian vegetation provided that is lower so we could see this lake rather than as now it seems like a private lake mostly for the 10 or so houses that abut it.
Answer: Yes, Public Works can trim the vegetation in this area to allow for easier viewing of the lake. We appreciate the input.
Complete question: If the Horsehoe Lake is eliminated, will the new dam at the Lower Lake have to be gigantic in order to handle the water from the Horse Lake area, and what will that mean to the integrity of historic site and the neighborhood aesthetics?
Answer: Horseshoe Lake does not provide much active storage and therefore it's removal would not impact the design or size of the Lower Lake dam when it is reconstructed. Lower Lake dam is also a Class I dam regulated by ODNR and passes only 2% of the design flood that is required by Ohio Revised Code. In order to properly reconstruct the dam to meet current regulations the overall appearance and configuration of the dam will have to be altered.
Complete question: The Shaker Lakes represent far more to our community than a means of flood control. They are a place of community, a wildlife refuge, an important historical location, and much more. Not maintaining this irreplaceable community resource is as irresponsible, reprehensible and shortsighted as was the plan to build a highway on this site years ago. As a longtime resident of Shaker, I ask you who is being served by the penny wise and pound foolish policy of viewing this resource in this way?
Answer: The NEORSD recommendation seeks to balance safety, responsible stormwater management, cost, preservation of the environment, and the creation of a community amenity. Our goal is to balance these and other considerations that will best serve the community now and in the future.
Complete question: Since boating, swimming and fishing are going to be permitted in Lower Lake, the fleeing nesting and breeding wildlife that need a lake environment will need a protected refuge; since Marshall and Green Lake are too small and built upon, wouldn't Upper Horseshoe Lake be the only and best place for that?
Answer: One goal of the NEORSD recommendation for Horseshoe Lake is to restore the area to its original natural state and allow for birds and fish to thrive in their natural environment.
Complete question: If NEORSD removes Horseshoe dam and Lake, then the resulting new dam at Lower Lake will need to be much larger, destroying the beauty and historical significance of the present restoration. Wouldn't restoring the existing 2 dams be the more secure and beautiful option? Furthermore, the 2-mile, 20' wide, multi-million dollar Doan Tunnel already being built in Ambler Park is immense. Assuming that holds enough storm water to solve the problem of flooding in University Circle, why has NEORSD stated that Horseshoe Lake has to be removed to solve flooding there?
Answer: The design and materials originally used to construct Horseshoe and Lower Lake Dams do not meet the current safety standards for a Class I dam. ODNR Dam Safety Program requires modern engineering and materials specifications to ensure the protection of life and property per the Ohio Revised Code. The Doan Valley Tunnel was constructed to control combined sewer overflows at 11 locations along Doan Brook; the tunnel was not constructed to mitigate flooding along the brook.
Complete question: How can we let Horseshoe lake disappear! Maybe the Sewer district says the lake isn't worth fixing but do they live here? Do they realize what Shakerites went through long ago to make sure a highway didn't run through Shaker - taking ALL of the lakes away?! This community thrives on having these lakes as a lifestyle, a place of peace, water to soothe the soul! Not to mention the people that live around the lake and have that as an asset when selling - it's hard enough with the high taxes - at least let the lake be an asset for homeowners/sellers. And who say's they won't take the other lakes around the Heights area. This sets a bad precedent and needs to be readdressed immediately. Thank you.
Answer: Protecting the beauty of the Shaker Lakes and parklands and continuing to ensure they are a destination for hikers, bird watchers and picnickers is a priority for both cities as well as NEORSD and other stakeholders. The two cities, along with ample opportunity for community input, will work with NEORSD throughout the process to ensure that our lakes and parklands remain a beautiful asset for our communities and the region.
Complete question: Was heavy machinery used to on the bridge and deck at Horseshoe Lake dam for recent parapet work and could that have contributed to further and more drastic deterioration and weakening of the dam and spillway?
Answer: The equipment used to make the recent repairs to the observation deck would have had minimal, if any, impact on the structure. The forces of the equipment on the deck are more vertical in nature. It is our understanding, the structural instability of the dam and spillway structure are primarily a result of the hydraulic pressure (which is horizontal). While backfilling the excavation, we purposely placed material in lifts to minimize the hydraulic pressure. Also, the material used did not require any a vibratory equipment for compaction as this may have led to additional damage.
Complete question: In the early going shortly after Horseshoe Lake was drained, could earth-moving equipment have been brought in (from North Park or South Park or the park itself) to remove the silt and dig out more potential depth in the lake bed to reduce strain and water pressure on the dam during storms?
Answer: No. This would not have made an appreciable difference, as the lake would still have overtopped in a heavy rainfall. In addition, with more water, more pressure would have been put on the dam.
Complete question: Please explain the costs, rationale and associated regional benefits of repairing, replacing or removing the Horseshoe Lake dam, as well as dredging the lake, as compared with those assessed and incurred several years ago at Green Lake and Andover Road dam. Was the Green Lake project more beneficial to the regional stormwater management plan than Horseshoe Lake?
Answer: We estimate the cost to replace the dam at Horseshoe Lake to be $20.7 million because a lot of sediment must be removed from the current lake bed to the depth required for a healthy lake. The separate cost to replace the dam at Lower Lake is $13.6 million.
The Horseshoe Lake dam could be replaced but the Sewer District cannot fund the replacement with Regional Stormwater Management Program dollars because there is no significant flood control benefit to the region, which includes Cleveland Heights, Shaker Heights and the City of Cleveland.
Flood control isn't the only thing we look at; we also consider issues like streambank erosion and water quality when we're developing the Master Plans and prioritizing projects.
Our proposed project is to remove the dam at Horseshoe Lake, fully restore Doan Brook and eventually replace the dam at Lower Lake. The Sewer District can pay for this solution through the Regional Stormwater Management Program and our estimated cost for this project is $28.3 million.
The cost for the “Shaker Lakes Dam Rehabilitation Phase I and Green Lake Dredging Project” was $5.6 million, with Shaker Heights using $500,000 of their Regional Stormwater Management Program Community Cost Share funds. The dam at Green Lake is a Class 2 dam – as opposed to those at Lower and Horseshoe Lakes that are Class 1 – but it, too, was out of compliance with ODNR. The Green Lake project was completed before the completion of the Stormwater Master Plan for this watershed.
Posted August 9 in response to question submitted for the August 9 public meeting.