Lake Loramie Project Underway

Staff Writer

The Minster Civic Association heard a presentation from Lake Loramie State Park manager Jason Whitman and Southwest District Park Manager Brian Miller, as the two updated members on the progress of the restoration of the spillway and dam at Lake Loramie.

The project is largely due to be completed by the end of 2017 and all work should be done by spring of 2018, Miller said.

“We were really on borrowed time here with this spillway,”  MIller said to a group from the Minster Civic Association at a Tuesday, Feb. 28 meeting at Morrie’s Landing near Fort Loramie.

Miller and Whitman pointed out the issues with the existing spillway and dam.

“I think everybody can see this one is beyond its useful life,” Miller said. “You can see one of the gate’s used to control the lake level is kicked out at an angle. That gate is supposed to be flush up against the concrete. The tube is filled with sandbags. That’s all that’s holding the water back from this lake right now. The other gate makes me nervous opening and closing it because it’s worn out.”

The new spillway will a labyrinth design at both Lake Loramie and Indian Lake, which also has a dam being restored. Both state parks’ projects will be the first in Ohio to use such a design. “The two projects are running neck-and-neck with each other,” Miller said. “The idea of the labryinth with the fingers is we can condense the size of the footprint because the water is going to go over a number of different ‘fingers.’ So it’s going to be a lot of concrete.”

By the end of the year, most of the major work on a new dam spillway should be completed on the $4 million project.

The current dam, built in 1844 to shut up a feeder lake into the Miami & Erie Canal, stands at 23 feet along State Route 362 and has a 220-foot-long concrete spillway that discharges water from the lake into Loramie Creek.

Miller said there will be no drawdown on the lake this summer, meaning recreational boating will be maintained during the construction.