use suggested for Maumee dredging site
Article courtesy of the Toledo Blade
November 16, 2001
A casino, a Lake Erie historical museum, and a fish hatchery
were some of the more imaginative ideas residents thought
up last night for developing Facility 3, a 500-acre peninsula
off the Oregon shoreline.
Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority representatives met with
about 40 residents at the senior center on Bay Shore Road
to brainstorm uses for Facility 3, a dumping ground for
silt dredged from the bottom of the Maumee Bay and Maumee
River for the last 25 years.
The site is estimated to be full by 2007, which has sparked
controversy over where dredged silt will be placed in the
future. In March, a committee studying the issue decided
not to expand Facility 3 horizontally.
The committee, which includes federal, state, and local
government officials, is considering adding more silt on
top of Facility 3, expanding Grassy Island at the mouth
of Maumee Bay, or dumping at several other locations on
Officials said they did not know how high Facility 3 might
become if more silt is put at the site. The land is about
24 feet above the bay bottom.
John Loftus, seaport director for the port authority, asked
residents to put aside the issue of future silt sites and
design their ideal uses for Facility 3.
"When we look at where to put the silt, itís going to be
a trade-off. We need to get an idea of what we might be
trading off at this site," he said.
Residents agreed that creating a channel through the peninsula
is a top priority. They said heated water released by Toledo
Edisonís Bayshore plant is harming wildlife on the south
side of Facility 3.
"We need to get some water to that side of Oregon Bay. The
bay is dying," resident Frank Bihn said.
A fish hatchery and large recreational park with natural
areas and bike trails were other popular ideas.
Mr. Loftus explained two types of efforts to reduce the
amount of silt that must be dumped. He said the committee
is trying to prevent sediments from entering the shipping
channel and is looking into recycling the silt by adding
sewage to make topsoil or mixing in fly ash to make material
for use in construction.
The committee also has made trenches in Facility 3 so water
can drain from the silt. Drier, tightly packed silt creates
more room to put additional silt at the site in the future.
Another public meeting about uses for Facility 3 will be
held in January, officials said. In the meantime, residents
are encouraged to think of an appealing name for the site.
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