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Construction underway to replace headwalls in West Creek watershed

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PARMA, Ohio   Bolstered by federal dollars sought by city officials, an estimated $1 million construction project is underway to replace headwalls and storm sewer pipes along the West Creek ridgeline – a move that will help alleviate erosion at a number of properties in Parma.

Built in the 1960s, the five headwalls – placed at the outlets of storm sewers that empty into West Creek – are deteriorating with age, causing significant erosion at properties on both sides of the ridgeline along Augustine, Meadow Lane, Gettysburg, and Thorncliff.  The affected areas are in Wards 6 and 9, represented respectively by Councilmen Larry Napoli and Jeff Crossman.

City officials aggressively sought funding from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to help get the project off the ground.  The agency agreed to provide $750,000 in federal dollars – or 75 percent of the cost – for replacing the dilapidated retaining walls and storm sewer pipes.

The funding is just a portion of the nearly $2 million city officials – with support from U.S. Representatives Jim Renacci and Marcy Kaptur – have brought in this year from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

“This much-needed project will help mitigate the erosion impacting residents along West Creek – something that’s important to do now to avoid greater costs later given the age of the retaining walls,” Mayor Tim DeGeeter said.  “In a time of tight budgets, our partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is essential to make projects like this happen.”

Both Crossman and Napoli are supportive of the projects.

Said Crossman: “The headwall project addresses some long-time environmental issues affecting numerous residents that live along both sides of the West Creek ridgeline.  It was an easy project to support, especially since the city did such a great job locating Army Corps funding for this project.”

Added Parma City Council President Sean Brennan: "On behalf of the residents who will be positively affected by this project, I want to thank Representatives Renacci and Kaptur for bringing federal dollars to the table. This project illustrates our collective commitment to improving infrastructure and quality of life in Parma."

Design work also is underway for another six headwalls in the West Creek and Big Creek watersheds in Wards 6, 7, and 9.  City officials are seeking federal dollars and other funding sources for the construction phase of that project.