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LRH 2009-338-TUS

Published May 8, 2014
Expiration date: 6/9/2014

TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: The following application has been submitted for a Department of the Army (DA) Permit under the provisions of Section 404 of the Clean Water Act.  This notice serves as the United States Army Corps of Engineers’ (Corps) request to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA) to act on Section 401 Water Quality Certification for the following application.

 

APPLICANT:            Mr. Richard McQueen

                                    Akron Canton Regional Airport Authority

                                    5400 Lauby Road NW

                                    North Canton, Ohio 44720

 

LOCATION:  As depicted on the attached Sheet 1 of 12, the proposed project would be located within the watershed of an unnamed tributary to the West Branch of Nimishillen Creek (Latitude 40.91489, Longitude -81.43021), at 5400 Lauby Road NW near the intersection of Airport Road, within the City of Green, Summit County, Ohio.  The proposed discharges of dredged and/or fill material into waters of United States would take place at two separate locations at the airport site.  The first location (see Sheet 2 of 12) is an approximate 6.7 acre area located at the southwest corner of Lauby Road and the airport’s main entrance road intersection.  The second location (see Sheet 3 of 12) is an approximate 1.4 acre area located west of Lauby Road, north of the existing parking lot, east of an airport maintenance building, and south of an unnamed airport access road.  The West Branch of Nimishillen Creek is a perennial relatively permanent water and an indirect tributary to the Tuscarawas River, a traditional navigable water of the United States.    

DESCRIPTION OF PROPOSED WORK:  The applicant has requested a DA authorization to discharge dredged and/or fill material into approximately 0.19 acre of jurisdictional wetland and 376 linear feet (0.03 acre) of an intermittent stream in association with a proposed parking lot improvement project at the Akron Canton Airport (see Sheet 4 of 12).  The proposed project would include the expansion of existing parking facilities and the reconfiguration/additional roadways to the parking facilities.  The parking area would be comprised of 771 spaces (221 parking spaces in the first location [see Sheet 5 of 12] and 550 parking spaces in the second location [see Sheet 6 of 12]).  The plans (Sheets 1 through 12) for the proposed project and off-site mitigation are attached to this notice.

 

ALTERNATIVES ANALYSIS: A total of approximately 0.19 acre of jurisdictional wetland and 376 linear feet of intermittent stream would be filled as a result of the proposal.  The project does not require access or proximity to, or siting within, the wetlands to fulfill its basic purpose and is considered a non-water dependent activity.  The Section 404(b)(1) Guidelines state that

for non-water dependent activities, practicable alternatives that do not involve wetlands are presumed to be available, unless clearly demonstrated otherwise.  The applicant is required to provide an alternatives analysis that must overcome this presumption prior to receiving authorization for the discharge of fill material.  The applicant has submitted the required alternatives analysis and it is currently under review.  A complete copy of the applicant’s alternatives analysis can be reviewed by appointment at the above address.  No permit will be issued until our office determines that practicable upland alternatives are not available to achieve the overall project purpose based upon the applicant’s alternative analysis. 

AVOIDANCE AND MINIMIZATION:  In evaluating a project area containing waters of the United States, consideration must be given to avoiding impacts on these sites.  If waters of the United States cannot be avoided, then the impacts must be minimized.  Approximately 0.29 acre of jurisdictional wetland and 376 linear feet of intermittent stream are identified within the proposed project area (see Sheet 7 of 12).  Avoidance and minimization efforts were incorporated into the proposal to reduce the footprint of the proposed project.  The applicant’s project would avoid 0.10 acre of the on-site wetland.  Construction activities would be performed during low flow stream conditions.  Stormwater management planning would incorporate the best management practices and water pollution controls necessary to maintain compliance with the Federal Water Pollution Control Act and Ohio Water Pollution Control Act for stormwater discharges associated with construction activity (see Sheets 8-10 of 12).  The best management practices would include the use of silt barriers, fiber rolls, and storm drain inlet protection where appropriate.  The water pollution controls would include outlet protection, temporary diversion of runoff, seeding, and mulching.  No area for which grading has been completed would be unseeded for longer than 14 days.  All disturbed areas would be seeded and/or revegetated with native plant species and native seed mixes after completion of construction activities.  The on-site intermittent stream would be enclosed via a pipe in order to maintain stream flows in the same general path, entering just south of the service road, and exiting to the east, under Lauby Road.  The pipe would be of sufficient size to accommodate a bankfull discharge and would be installed at a similar streambed slope in order to allow for passage of aquatic organisms.  An underground detention system with an accompanying sand filter would be installed to handle the increased runoff caused by paved surfaces.  The detention system would buffer the speed at which stormwater is traveling and the sand filter would cleanse the water released from the detention system by removing excess sediment and bacteria. 

 

COMPENSATORY MITIGATION PLAN:  To compensate for the losses of waters of the United States associated with the proposed project, the applicant proposes to purchase 0.5 acre of wetland mitigation credits from the Shannon Valley Mitigation Bank and restore 752 linear feet of an unnamed tributary to Middle Fork of Sugar Creek located on the eastern portion of the Wilderness Center in Wilmot, Ohio (see Sheet 11 of 12).  Currently, the unnamed tributary meanders through a forested area on the property before becoming channelized in an area of open field.  The applicant proposes to restore a minimum of 752 linear feet of the channelized section using natural stream design techniques (see Sheet 12 of 12). 

WATER QUALITY CERTIFICATION: A Section 401 Water Quality Certification may be required for this project.  It is the applicant’s responsibility to obtain certification from the OEPA. 

HISTORIC AND CULTURAL RESOURCES: The National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) has been consulted and it has been determined that there are no properties currently listed on the NRHP that would be indirectly or directly affected by the proposed work.  The project areas have been subject to severe disturbances or are contained in eroding, sloping conditions.  The areas are surrounded by construction/development activities associated with the abutting airport and highways.  The surrounding buildings are of modern derivation.  The Corps has determined the proposed project would have no effect on historic properties eligible or potentially eligible for inclusion on the NRHP.  A copy of this public notice will be furnished to Ohio State Historic Preservation Office for their review.  Comments concerning archaeological sensitivity of the project area should be based on collected data.

THREATENED AND ENDANGERED SPECIES: The proposed project is located within the known or historic range of the endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis), proposed endangered northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis), and threatened northern monkshood (Aconitum noveborancense).  The Corps has consulted the most recently available information and information provided by the applicant to make an effect determination. 

The first impact area is comprised of undeveloped successional growth forest and scrub shrub vegetation.  It contains one wetland, designated as Wetland A, and consists of a scrub shrub and a partially forested wetland.  The wetland is located within a low lying swale at the base of a road embankment.  The scrub shrub vegetation consists of species such as black willow, broad-leaf cattail, wild carrot, common service berry, sensitive fern, sugar maple, and sedges.  The forested wetland species consists of sugar maple and black willow.  The upland species outside of the wetland boundaries within this area consist of tulip poplar, red oak, black cherry, and American basswood. 

The second impact area is comprised undeveloped successional forest and scrub shrub vegetation.  It contains one stream that runs eastward along the bottom of a deep ravine located through the central portion of the area.  The stream begins at a point where three culverts discharge to the ravine, and then drains to a culvert crossing of Lauby Road.  Typical upland species within this area consist of black cherry, sugar maple, and wild grape. 

Due to the project type, size and location, the Corps has determined the applicant’s proposal would have no effect on the northern monkshood.  The applicant proposes to perform tree clearing operations prior to April 1 and after September 30 to minimize effects on the Indiana bat and the northern long-eared bat.  The Corps has determined that the proposed project may affect, but would not likely adversely affect the Indiana bat or northern long-eared bat.  Based on this information, the proposed project is not likely to adversely affect the continued existence of any endangered species or threatened species or result in the destruction or adverse modification of habitat of such species which has been determined to be critical.  This Public Notice serves as a request to the USFWS for any additional information they may have on whether any listed or proposed to be listed endangered or threatened species may be present in the area which would be affected by the activity, pursuant to Section 7(c) of the Endangered Species Act of 1972 (as amended). 

 

PUBLIC INTEREST REVIEW AND CUMULATIVE EFFECTS:  This application will be reviewed in accordance with 33 CFR 320‑332, the Regulatory Program of the Corps, and other pertinent laws, regulations, and executive orders.  Our evaluation will also follow the guidelines published by the United States Environmental Protection Agency pursuant to Section 404(b)(1) of the Clean Water Act (40 CFR part 230).  The decision whether to issue a permit will be based

on an evaluation of the probable impacts, including cumulative impacts, of the proposed activity on the public interest.  That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources.  The benefit that reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments.  All factors that may be relevant to the proposal will be considered, including the cumulative effects thereof; among those factors are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historic properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. 

SOLICITATION OF COMMENTS:  The Corps is soliciting comments from the public, Federal, state, and local agencies and officials, Indian Tribes, and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this proposed activity.  For accuracy and completeness of the administrative record, all data in support of or in opposition to the proposed work should be submitted in writing setting forth sufficient detail to furnish a clear understanding of the reasons for support or opposition.  Any person may request, in writing, within the comment period specified in the notice, that a public hearing be held to consider the application.  Requests for public hearings shall state, with particularity, the reasons for holding a public hearing.  Any comments received will be considered by the Corps to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal.  To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above.  Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment and/or an Environmental Impact Statement pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act.  Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.  Written statements received in this office on or before the expiration date of this Public Notice will become a part of the record and will be considered in the final determination.  A permit will be granted unless its issuance is found to be contrary to the public interest.

 

CLOSE OF COMMENT PERIOD:   All comments pertaining to this Public Notice must reach this office on or before the close of the comment period listed on page one of this Public Notice.  If no comments are received by that date, it will be considered that there are no objections.  Comments and requests for additional information should be submitted to:

 

                                                United States Army Corps of Engineers

                                                ATTN: CELRH-RD-N

                                                Public Notice No. LRH-2009-338-TUS

                                                502 Eighth Street

                                                Huntington, West Virginia 25701-2070.

 

Please note names and addresses of those who submit comments in response to this Public Notice become part of our administrative record and, as such, are available to the public under provisions of the Freedom of Information Act.  Thank you for your interest in our nation’s water resources.  If you have any questions concerning this Public Notice, please contact Teresa Spagna of the North Branch at (304) 399-5210, by mail at the above address, or by email at: teresa.d.spagna@usace.army.mil.