ODNR Kelleys Island Glacial Grooves Erosion Protection – ODNR / S&ME – Kelleys Island, Erie County, Ohio

A National Natural Landmark, the Glacial Grooves on Kelleys Island are the largest easily accessible such grooves in the world. They were scoured into the solid limestone bedrock about 18,000 years ago by the great ice sheet which covered part of North America. Over the years, many grooves were uncovered, only to be quarried out. In 1982, a section of quarry land was set aside to preserve one of the last grooves, the visible section of which is 400 feet long, 35 feet wide and up to 10 feet deep. This Ohio History Connection (OHC) site is managed by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Parks & Watercraft.

ODNR contracted S&ME to investigate and study options to protect the Glacial Grooves formation from erosion and deterioration due to exposure. S&ME in turn retained STONE to assist with tree/plant survey, natural resource permitting review, structural engineering of pedestrian bridges and railings, and bid and construction phase support.

Pedestrian Bridges
This was a fast-track design project – project started in the spring of 2021, with the bridge to be open by the fall of 2022. STONE completed the following tasks:

• Provided 2 bridge superstructure alternatives for the Preliminary Design, including opinions of probable construction cost.
• Researched different materials (e.g., glass) to meet the aesthetic look desired by ODNR for the decking, as well as to meet ADA and safety concerns.
• Designed a 2-span pedestrian bridge on skew to maximize viewshed, allow areas for pedestrians to gather, and to minimize impacts to the grooves.
• ODNR also desired the minimize the potential for birds using the underside of the bridge. STONE designed a unique bird deterrent system to address this concern
• STONE also developed the associated specifications (concrete, reinforcing, structural steel, composite decking, bridge bearings).
• Existing railing was to be replaced with new railing. STONE assist S&ME with railing type concepts and railing anchor/support design.

STONE staff also completed the lakeside daisy and tree survey. All trees to be impacted by the construction were identified. The survey for the federally threatened and state endangered Tetraneuris herbacea (lakeside daisy) was conducted within the proposed construction limits.

“We rely on STONE on a regular basis and they have become one of our favorite and most reliable teaming partners. They do thorough work and the reports are always delivered well before the deadline. I often recommend their services to other consultants looking to complete a team.”