Land Management Committee
The Land Management Committee was formed in January 2007 to determine the appropriate uses of the land owned by Granville Township. The challenge is to inspect the properties, review their present uses and determine the best use of the property for the future. Since its inception the committee has worked with the Granville Township Trustees and other appropriate entities to develop recommendations for the management of Township Open Space.
- Create a Nature Preserve at Spring Valley / Salt Run – details
- Strengthen Farm Land Lease Language to Promote Best Practices – details
- Support Kiwanis Sugar Bush Project – details
- Establish and Promote Community Communication – details
Create a Nature Preserve at Spring Valley / Salt Run – The committee met with members of the Licking Land Trust in an effort to become more familiar with that group’s role in the development and maintenance of the Spring Valley property. The committee walked and reviewed the Spring Valley and Salt Run properties and held preliminary discussions for use of the Salt Run agricultural plot and ways to facilitate the creation of the Nature Preserve. These include the following:
- Improve the Spring Valley / Salt Run Trail System – Two new sections of trail were created with the help of Granville Middle School and New Albany Middle School students on Earth Day 2007. Granville High School students also held a trail work day in May 2007, creating rock walkways across Salt Run. In summer 2007, students from Granville High School created switchbacks and performed other trail maintenance at Spring Valley. Earth Day 2008 involved both Granville Middle School and Denison University students. They performed maintenance to the trail system and rebuilt stepping stone crossings on Salt Run. In summer 2008, trail blazes were purchased and installed on the trails and routine maintenance was provided.
- Provide Guidance and Assistance for Volunteer Projects – Craig McDonald initiated work with several Eagle Scout candidates. Together they designed projects to further benefit Spring Valley Nature Preserve. In 2007 Alex Miller constructed a bridge over Salt Run. Derek Esh has presented a proposal to construct and install 2 kiosks, at each trail head on Spring Valley and Salt Run properties. Another Eagle Scout candidate, Luke Fergang, proposed a project that includes trail construction and placement of 3 to 4 benches along the trails
- Partner with Denison University – The Environmental Studies Program has assisted with Earth Day 2007 and 2008 projects by providing student leaders and tools. The Environment Practicum Class of 2008 created a trail map, park guidelines, and a volunteer trail maintenance guide. They also hosted a Fall Festival for the community. Additionally, they designed and installed the sign at the entrance to Spring Valley Nature Preserve.
- Salt Run Restoration Project (2011) – The project was to restore the natural stream bank and hydrologic regime of Salt Run, a tributary to Raccoon Creek. The project is located within the Spring Valley Nature Preserve and was the third phase of transforming Spring Valley from a community swimming pool to a community nature preserve. A lowhead dam constructed to provide water to a community swimming pool was removed along with a 185 linear foot concrete retaining wall on the west bank of the stream (the concrete wall constricted the Salt Run channel, induced erosion and undercut the east bank). The small lowhead dam and concrete spillway served no current purpose and was causing localized erosion immediately downstream on the east bank.
Specifically, the project included:
- Restoration of natural flow regime, stream channel, and flood plain to 185 linear feet of Salt Run through removal of 185 linear feet of concrete levee.
- Rehabilitation and enhancement of 185 linear feet of riparian habitat using native plant materials such as hardwood seedlings and shrubs. Total acreage to be enhanced will be approximately 1/3 of an acre.
- Restoration of natural flow to approximately 50 linear feet both upstream and downstream from the dam through lowhead dam removal.
- Public education and outreach.
This project was funded by a Surface Water Improvement Fund (SWIF) Grant awarded by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.
Click to view July 2012 Restoration Picture
Strengthen Farm Land Lease language to Promote Best Practices – Rob Schaadt, initiated a series of meetings with the United States Department of Agriculture to develop a Farm Land Management Plan for township properties being used for agriculture purposes. This resulted in the inclusion of language supporting Best Management Practices in future new and renewed farm leases.
Support Kiwanis Sugar Bush Project – Don Lewis, a member of the Granville Kiwanis, approached the committee about the possibility of utilizing township land as a Sugar Bush for their maple sugar project. After reviewing several possible sites, the Kiwanis submitted a formal proposal to use the agricultural parcel that had been previously farmed, at the Salt Run property. The committee approved the proposal, and the Kiwanis then submitted it to the trustees for their review. After an opportunity for public comment the trustees gave final approval to the project in March 2009.
Establish and Promote Community Communication – The committee has endeavored to promote and maintain communication with the residents of Granville Township. In spring 2007 flyers were distributed to residents bordering Salt Run to inform them of upcoming activities planned for the Spring Valley Nature Preserve and Salt Run Park. The Granville Sentinel was also contacted to report on the volunteer activities at Spring Valley Nature Preserve and Salt Run. Meeting notices are published in the Granville Sentinel and an email contact is available on the Granville Township website. Members of the community are always welcome at the Land Management Committee meetings.