Lakeview Park Beach Beneficial Use Impairment Assessment
Lakeview Park is located approximately 1 mile west of the Black River harbor in the City of Lorain and is managed by Lorain County Metro Parks. Recreational activities include swimming and sunbathing, lawn bowling, beach volleyball, picnicking, cycling, and kayaking. Fecal coliform counts from water samples taken at the beach have been of increasing concern; Lakeview Beach has had the highest number of advisories as compared to other Ohio Lake Erie beaches since 2011.
Coldwater was retained by the City to characterize water and beach substrate quality and to provide conceptual design alternatives to address E. Coli within the nearshore area. The project aimed to identify sources of E. Coli bacteria, identify animal species contributing to the problem, gain an understanding of lake water circulation in the nearshore area, and understand operational feasibility of potential projects in the park.
Hydrodynamic modeling was conducted to understand existing circulatory conditions as well as to assess the likelihood of success upon implementation of identified potential solutions. Storm sewer outfalls, gull and geese presence, and surface runoff were all determined to be contributing factors to high bacteria advisories. Poor circulation between the beach and breakwaters is also a likely factor, allowing bacteria to linger as opposed to being flushed out into the lake.
Coldwater evaluated alternatives for all bacteria sources which included relocation of storm sewer and corresponding outfalls, restoration of wetlands and dunes, bird deterrents, breakwater modifications, and maintenance/operation enhancements. The City is currently pursuing funding, investigating human bacteria sources, and planning an investigation of rodent sources which are likely arising from storm inlet sources.