Park District Now Protects More than 24,000 Acres Across 49 Communities
Cleveland Metroparks popular West Creek Reservation has grown by over 52 acres, following recent land acquisitions in several communities including park land in Seven Hills for the first time in the Park District’s 103 year history. Cleveland Metroparks has grown more than 12 percent over the last decade and, following the new additions, now protects more than 24,000 acres in 49 communities.
The recent land acquisitions include protection of valuable forests and streams northwest and southeast of the existing West Creek Reservation, which now directly serves Seven Hills, Independence and Parma, Ohio’s eighth largest city. Importantly, the new park land also lays the groundwork for future trail connections from West Creek Reservation to the new Hemlock Creek Trail in Independence and the regional Towpath Trail, which will soon connect to downtown Cleveland.
“West Creek Reservation is one of our fastest growing reservations and we’re thrilled to add land in the City of Seven Hills to our Emerald Necklace,” said Cleveland Metroparks CEO Brian M. Zimmerman. “These new protections conserve valuable forests and streams, provide more public access to greenspace, and lay the groundwork for future trail connections, both locally, as well as regionally to our growing trail network across Northeast Ohio.”
Over the last decade, West Creek Reservation has now grown roughly a third in size through the strong partnerships between Cleveland Metroparks, West Creek Conservancy and the City of Parma.
"Connecting people to nature and places, while protecting our land and water resources is what the West Creek Greenway was originally envisioned to do and a dynamic park and trail system is only made possible through strong partnerships and community support," said Derek Schafer, Executive Director of West Creek Conservancy. "Urban watersheds, such as West Creek, require unique tactics associated with land conservation, habitat restoration, and in many cases reclaiming unsustainably developed lands, puzzling back together otherwise fragmented greenspace."
In 2020, Cleveland Metroparks added significant acreage to several park reservations in addition to West Creek Reservation including more than 87 acres to Bedford Reservation, approximately 25 acres to Hinckley Reservation, approximately 75 acres to Brecksville Reservation and 25 acres to Mill Stream Run Reservation.
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