6/16/16 – 5:00 A.M.
The Maumee Watershed Conservancy District has started the process of buying property to build a diversion channel near Ottawa. The Courier reports the district voted this week to notify landowners of the initial terms. The agency does have the power to use eminent domain for the process. That means the government can take the land needed for the channel as long as the landowners are paid what’s determined to be a fair price.
At least one family plans to fight the issue. Alan Kuhlman tells the Courier the proposed channel would take about eight acres of his property at 10979 Road I-9. He says it would isolate another 30 acres. The farm has been recognized as a Century Farm by both the Ohio Department of Agriculture and Catholic Charities.
The proposed channel is estimated to cost $5 million. It would be around 4,000 feet long. Project Engineer Steve Wilson says the channel would help water take a direct route around an oxbow in the River. The channel is expected to reduce flood levels by up to 9 inches.
The lowering of the Road I-9 embankment is expected to drop flood levels by another six inches. That part of the project is complete for the most part.
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