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Abandoned mine work set to begin next year

A state abandoned mine lands program will mean improvements to County Road 22, but not until next year.

Wednesday, July 18, 2001

A state abandoned mine lands program will mean improvements to County Road 22, but not until next year.

"What we’re trying to do is provide protection from where the creek floods because of mine sediment buildup," said Barb Flowers, of ODNR’s Division of Mineral Resources Management.

The state will use about $500,000 for flood protection and stream restoration along Little Storms Creek.

Work will involve raising four sections of county road, about 1,900 feet, by an average of 1.5 feet; and about 600 feet of creek channel will be cleaned, Ms. Flowers said.

The project remains in the design phase, awaiting the bid process. The earliest construction could start, however, would be next year’s construction season, she said.

Overall, the project should relieve the frequency and amount of flooding that residents along County Road 22 experience, Ms. Flowers said.

The area covered by the project is about 5.5 square miles, and 12 percent of that has been stripmined. About 10 percent has been cleared for commercial or residential development.

"The fact that the stream itself is filled with mine sediment has increased flooding in that area," Ms. Flowers said. "We had a consultant look at the channel, and there was not a lot of work that could do with the channel itself."

So, ODNR officials determined raising the level of the road away from the stream would alleviate some flooding in severe storm events, although it would not protect from Ohio River backwater flooding, she said.

Also, the state will use about $50,000 to protect a county homeowner from acid mine drainage.

The home, located along County Road 56, has suffered water damage from a nearby old mine. The project will install an underground drain that will catch the water, take it under the road and dump it in a nearby stream, Ms. Flowers said.

The county’s two abandoned mine lands projects are part of a record $10 million in 38 new abandoned mine land (AML) projects in 19 Ohio counties.

Administered by the ODNR Division of Mineral Resources Management, Ohio’s AML reclamation program is funded by the U.S. Department of the Interior and state grants, as well as bond monies forfeited by former mine operators.