Agency Rebuilding Portage Lakes Dam is Hosting Information and Comment Sessions

May 10, 2017

Portage Lakes map

There will be three local public briefings Thursday for the Portage Lakes East Reservoir Dam project. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources is doing the work and expects to start this summer. The meetings will be at the ODNR District 3 headquarters on Portage Lake Drive starting at 3  p.m., 5:30 p.m., and 7:15 p.m. 

Clock Tower at the center of the Portage Lakes
Credit Tim Rudell / WKSU

The meetings are to update information on plans for the 1,400-foot East Reservoir earthen dam and get public comment.

ODNR spokesman John Wisse says that while the 175-year old dam is not in imminent danger of failing, it can no longer let enough water through during storms and is generally in bad shape.

“We have severe concrete deterioration at our north spillway. The lake drain is in bad shape.  And there is excessive seepage under and through the dam embankment.  So because of its age and its condition, it’s a high priority that we get this taken care of as soon as possible.”

Fixing the East Reservoir dam is one of five related infrastructure projects in the Portage Lakes that are expected to cost about $75 million.