Conservation in the Merriman Valley
The Merriman Valley resides just north of the City of Akron and can be considered a gateway to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. Throughout the Valley you can experience hiking and biking along the Towpath Trail, kayaking and fishing in the Cuyahoga River, as well as trips to the Hale Farm and Summit Metro Parks. However, there are also larger tracks of land with abundant wildlife, forest and water resources (streams and wetlands) that are commonly facing threats of development.
West Creek took action to leverage over $1.5M in an effort to permanently protect over 140 acres of land including over 2 miles of waterway. With the awarding of a Clean Ohio Greenspace grant, West Creek subsequently leveraged approximately $600,000 in private financing to complete a series of three acquisitions. Furthermore, this catalyzed our ability to work with additional stakeholders and land-owners in the valley to protect another 60 acres; an effort that will topple $5M in conservation and restoration.
This is a generational impact to the Merriman Valley, not only extending current park and trail systems, but to also add to the character and uniqueness of the region. The series of properties overlap within the Mud Brook and Woodward Creek watersheds, both direct tributaries to the Cuyahoga River and they each provide a long-term opportunity to further leverage conservation and restoration initiatives within the Valley.