ODNR Churn Creek Dam Decommissioning – DLZ / ODNR – Jefferson Township, Ohio

Churn Creek Reservoir is a small reservoir created from an earthen dam installed on an Unnamed Tributary to Churn Creek. The reservoir is located within the Shawnee State Forest and is under the jurisdiction of the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). The dam was installed in the 1930s and contains historical significance. In addition, the reservoir serves as a vernal pool for a wide variety of amphibians, including Ambystomid salamanders. ODNR wished to decommission the dam due to safety concerns and lack of use. STONE completed ecological services, permitting, design assistance, limited construction monitoring, and survey for this project, including the following:

Federal and State Listed Species Review – A federal and state listed species review was completed through an ODNR Natural Heritage Database records, ODNR Environmental Review, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) records.

Waters/Wetland Delineation Report – STONE delineated the approximate location, boundaries, and areal extent of jurisdictional Waters of the United States (WOTUS) and Waters of the State (Ohio).

Nationwide Permit Pre-Construction Notification (PCN) – The project impacted WOTUS and therefore required a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). STONE prepared a PCN, containing the required permit application, impact information, avoidance, minimization, and mitigation information, figures, and other required information.

Design Assistance – STONE provided assistance during design in an effort to evaluate and include off-stream vernal pool habitat for breeding amphibians.

I just wanted to reach out to both of you & all of Stone for your outstanding effort, due diligence & professionalism on this project.

I’m certainly no ESA expert, but I was blown away by the detail contained in your report, especially given the tight timeframe that was required for delivery.

Please know that your work at Walnut Grove is very much appreciated by everyone here at POAH.

For the record, I am now a huge fan of Stone Environmental, and I hope we will continue our working relationship well into the future.

Doug Dempsey, POAH