Middleburg Heights topples trees at future detention basin site

MIDDLEBURG HEIGHTS, Ohio – In preparation for construction of the first of three flood control detention basins along Big Creek Parkway in Middleburg Heights, a land clearing company on March 6 began removing trees and underbrush from the Pearl Road site.

For anyone who has never observed such work in action, it was jaw-dropping. A backhoe-sized piece of tree-pulling equipment, fitted with a huge revolving blade and large metal teeth, simply proceeded across the ground with Terminator-like intensity.

Midwest Land Clearing Inc. removed trees, logs, brush and stumps on the city-owned property located at 7044 Pearl Road. The site will contain Basin 3. Basins 1 and 2 are still making their way through the construction planning process.

“Once we get the final U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit (anticipated to be issued soon because the city successfully mitigated a wetland located on the site), we will formally go out to bid for construction,” Middleburg Heights Director of Public Service Jim Herron told cleveland.com. “We don’t anticipate any problems.”

City Council passed an ordinance in June 2022 enabling Middleburg Heights to purchase wetland mitigation credits. Finding those credits has become an increasingly difficult, time-consuming process across the region.

“Mitigation banking aids in protecting nature … by offsetting the ecological loss of a development project by compensating for the preservation and restoration of a different area,” the legislation indicated. “Mitigation credits at the Grafton Swamp Wetlands Mitigation Bank have become available to mitigate for certain wetland impacts.”

Mayor Matt Castelli said the wetland credits satisfy requirements for all three basins.

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