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05-17-03: Celina Boardwalk hits bump
The Daily Standard

    Celina officials ran into a slight snag in the process of gaining state approval for its West Bank Road boardwalk plan.
    Celina Community Development Director Sue Canary on Friday told the community betterment committee of Celina City Council that the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Dam Safety Division rejected a plan that would widen the current West Bank walkway to 12 feet. Instead, Canary and city planners went back to the drawing board, with a better understanding of what that division wants to see.
    Jay Korte, with Celina's engineering department, told the committee the dam safety division prefers either a floating walkway away from the existing sea wall, or an elevated walkway that stands over the water a few feet from shore.
    The standing walkway idea was discussed by the committee two months ago, but the plan to extend the current walkway was chosen for its cost-effectiveness. The idea of a floating walkway received nearly no discussion, because of its perpetual maintenance requirements.
    City leaders are deciding what fashion of boardwalk they would like to see because state Rep. Keith Faber, (R-Celina), had a hand in securing $250,000 from the 2003-2004 state capital projects budget for the construction of a West Bank Road boardwalk. More than $600,000 also was included in that budget for upgrades to Wright State University-Lake Campus.
    Canary plans to use the $250,000 as leverage to apply for grants from other state agencies.
    Korte told the committee that the dam division refused to even look at the boardwalk plans if they covered the existing rip-rap (jagged rocks that line the sea wall).
    "They just blew it out of the water," Korte said.
    "The issue here is not common sense, or engineer's sense, it's perception," council member Bob Nuding said, after several commented that the city's idea would strengthen the West Bank.
    Canary said the preliminary design needs approval from the dam division so negotiations for a long-term lease from the division of parks can begin.
    No decisions were made Friday, but committee members suggested Canary and the contracted engineering firm Burgess & Niple, of Columbus, seek approval again, while moving forward with designing the standing walkway plan.
    The committee also learned details of two annexations from Jefferson Township in the works.
    A 25.5-acre area off Ohio 703 in eastern Jefferson Township has been approved by Mercer County Commissioners for annexation and goes before the council in mid-June. Plans for a 26-acre annexation north of Celina have been drawn up, but not set in motion yet.
    The 25.5-acre area lies between Ohio 29 and Ohio 703, east of Lakeview Drive. It includes the properties fronting the east half of Lakeview Drive, First Baptist Church, the large area of bare ground east of the church and Fairview Resort trailer court, on the south side of Ohio 703.
    The rectangular 26-acre strip of land stretches from U.S. 127 west, abutting the rear of four lots that front Bruns Avenue. It includes part of a vacated railroad right-of-way behind the Bruns Avenue residences.
    Canary said Abounding Grace Ministries, 817 N. Sugar St., plans to relocate to the new annexation because its current worship center and school is cramped. After purchasing 20 acres, the church learned the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency would not allow a septic system because of the proximity to Celina's sewer.
    Canary said an expedited type annexation application will be submitted to the commissioners later this month. The expedited process requires 100 percent of affected property owners approve of the annexation. The commissioners must approve the item within 24 hours if the procedure is followed correctly. Then, a 60-day waiting period must lapse before the council ratifies the annexation, Ohio law states.
    Sovinski said the new sewer line would run between two properties on Bruns Avenue east to the property, and will need a grinder pump with a pressurized line. Most city sewer lines are sloped toward the treatment plant to allow a gravity flow, lines far away or downhill from the plant need pressurized lines to take the sewage to a gravity line.
    Abounding Grace will cover the costs of the line extension and grinder pump, Sovinski said.


Phone: (419)586-2371,   Fax: (419)586-6271
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The Standard Printing Company
P.O. Box 140, Celina, OH 45822