Summit Lake poised for $1.1 million makeover

September 17, 2009

Akron City Council has cleared the way for a $1.1million Summit Lake makeover.

Council Monday night passed legislation authorizing the city to apply for a $540,000 grant from the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund and to use $561,000 in either federal Neighborhood Stabilization Plan or Community Development Block Grant funds to complete the Summit Lake Eastside Recreation Area project.

Approximately 10 acres of land to the east of the lake will be dedicated to an open space park. Other neighborhood improvements will include new housing, existing housing improvements and some foreclosure prevention activity, along with enhanced educational and recreational opportunities with the nearby Summit Lake Community Center. The project will also incorporate the recently completed ‘floating’ towpath, which will be about 100 feet south of the proposed park area.

Land acquisition activity is expected to begin in early 2010. Construction and environmental work on the project is expected to begin in the spring, bringing the potential to create a number of Akron jobs, said Economic Development and Job Creation Committee Chair Terry Albanese (W-6).

Albanese said Council’s support for the Summit Lake project will improve the city’s economic, environmental and recreational landscape.

“We’ve achieved a three-way win with this project,” Albanese said. “All of the local matching is from federal or state funds – very little, if any, city funds will be used – but we benefit in the areas of job creation, housing improvements and adding yet another asset to the city’s urban parks landscape with this open space in the heart of the city.”

The Ohio General Assembly made funds available from the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund for open space projects throughout the state when it passed the amended Substitute H.B. 3 in 2001.