“X” marks the spot….

It’s always a little bit sad when big trees have to be removed from your property. We had a huge oak tree removed from my front yard this year, and it was a little traumatic to say the least. Still, it’s usually an indicator of something to come, and can be viewed as progress under the right light. This is certainly the case for the big oak tree at the entrance to the park – now marked with the big white ‘X’.

If you have driven down Christman in the last few days, or hours, you will have seen the mark on the tree, and perhaps even the tree company doing work on our neighbor’s lots across from the park. Soon, they will be headed down the property line into the park to make way for construction. This is all a part of the senior living center going in where Zergott’s landscaping was most recently.

Members of the board have met with the construction foreman, the city engineer, reps from the Ohio Soil Conservation corp, and the senior center developers a few times over the last two months to make sure that our park’s role in the construction project is handled well, and that we do not put any of our property or residents at risk during or after construction.

So what is really going on? Well, for starters, the major construction happening involves Bretton Ridge because of the way they will be handling the drainage of runoff water from the site. The developer’s plans, approved by the city, will first handle the runoff in a series of detention systems. One is a series of pipes under the parking lots (to be built), and the other is a detention pond (to be dug) at the Lorain Road side of the lot. These two systems have been designed to hold and detain all the water from the buildings and lots, and slowly release any excess into a secondary drainage system. This is where our development comes in.

The secondary drainage system involves connecting the backyard drains of several residents around the construction site, then connecting with a pipe that will run behind Szarka’s building, across Christman Dr., and into the ditch at the edge of the parking lot at Bretton Ridge park. To make all this happen, some new drain pipes will need to be set, and some old pipes will need to be removed and fixed. This involves a significant amount of digging, tree removal, and traffic disruption. However, we have been able to work with the construction team and city engineers to make sure that flow through the park and pool will not be interrupted. They have designed their workflow to keep part of the driveway open at all times.

Sometime in the next few days, you will see some tree removal and site prep work being done. This involves clearing the big tree at the corner of the driveway, and also clearing some smaller trees and shrubs that line the west end of the drainage ditch. The construction crews will also be marking and removing the posts at the entrance to the park driveway, scoping out exactly where they will need to dig to remove the old pipes.

Once construction begins, the digging work will be significant, but should not take up a large amount of time. We will be able to see the old drain pipes removed, and the sewer and runoff drains replaced fairly quickly. We were able to work with the city and the developer to ensure that the new drain pipes will be safe and secure for our youngest residents and our most curious ‘explorers’. The original plan left a fair amount of ditch and pipe exposed, and we were able to get them to extend that pipe and bury it to keep it mostly hidden from view.

Everyone is hopeful that with all the new drains going in, and with all the old drains being fixed, many of the problems we see with standing water on Christman Drive, and problems homeowners along the worksite have expressed, with regard to drainage, will improve significantly. The board members worked to defend homeowners in this project, and worked to make sure that our development benefits in the long run from this construction project.

If you have further questions about specific plans for this project, please let me know. I’ll do my best to answer your questions, or at least pass you along to the city engineer or developer representatives for more clarification. Thanks very much – it’s an exciting time for our neighborhood – hopefully we will see dramatic improvements in drainage for years to come. Thanks!

Jon Jarc

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