From the Village Administrator

Proposed Greenbelt Project Information - Retention Pond & Walk/Bike Trail

Update May 26, 2023: Added a link to the Community of the Transfiguration presentation on the plan for a bioswale system and an image of the new pond layout, following the May 23 Streets Committee meeting.

Two significant projects, each with distinct goals to benefit the Village, are currently being discussed for the Greenbelt property that runs along Oak Road on the southern boundary of the Village.

The first is a retention pond to be installed near the corner of Oak Road and South Troy Avenue. The concept for this pond came from planning discussions and meetings with the Village’s engineer and residents in the southeastern corner of the Village. This pond is designed to retain a certain depth of water at all times – rain or shine. This pond will collect stormwater that enters the Greenbelt from rain and other precipitation, as well as runoff from the Goodwill and Woodlawn industrial properties south of the Village. By collecting and holding this water, it will flow more slowly and at lesser amounts over longer periods of time through the creek that travels north from the Greenbelt, crossing Albion, passing Warwick Place and Little Creek and heading under Sharon Avenue before entering the West Fork of the Mill Creek.

This project is part of a number of stormwater improvements in the southeast corner of the Village. The Village will be installing this pond, as well as restoring the underground stormwater piping along Hedgerow and Albion Avenues. In addition, the Community of the Transfiguration/Bethany School has designed a series of bioswales, or areas meant to detain stormwater for short periods and also benefit native plants and trees. Click here to view a slideshow on the proposed project from the Community of the Transfiguration.

Over the past several years, this pond has been discussed at numerous public meetings of the Streets Committee, as part of a holistic plan to improve stormwater management in this southeastern corner of the Village. This project is nearly ready for bidding and construction, which are anticipated to take place this summer.

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The second project is a walking and biking trail that is being led by Great Parks of Hamilton County and the Connecting Active Communities Coalition, or CACC. This trail, known as the Mill Creek Triangle Trail, seeks to connect the Mill Creek Trail, which extends to the Ohio River Trail, Wasson Way Trail and Little Miami Scenic Trail. Phase 4 of this trail is proposed to be routed through the Village connecting Winton Woods, Glenwood Gardens and Sharon Woods,

This trail project is in its preliminary stage, in which the Village has been asked to contribute $7,500 toward a feasibility study. This request has been discussed in the Recreation Committee, and a request made by CACC for Village contribution of $7,500 toward the feasibility study. The feasibility study will explore trail route options, generate cost estimates, coordinate public input sessions and set the course to obtain state and federal grants.

Although a drawing (see below) showing the general route of the trail has been provided to the Village, there have been no decisions regarding its nature and route, which is almost certain to differ substantially from the drawing. 

Phase 4

Frequently asked questions - Retention Pond

  • Why a retention pond instead of underground detention or swales?
A retention pond is designed to hold water at all times. This provides a natural slowing of new water entering the pond, which comes from a number of areas, specifically a portion of the industrial properties in Woodlawn. The Village has installed swales and check dams, or areas intended to redirect water to slow its flowing over the ground, but they are overwhelmed by the amount of water in the area. The idea for a retention pond in the Greenbelt was first mentioned in a Village engineering study in 1987.

  • The Greenbelt is in Woodlawn. How does that impact these projects?

The Greenbelt is located within the Village of Woodlawn’s jurisdictional boundary, but the property is owned by the Village, with no deed restrictions. Woodlawn has zoned the property “Open Space”, which only permits the installation of public and recreational improvements. Woodlawn will be provided the final drawings of the pond once they are prepared for their input. Woodlawn has not objected to previous stormwater projects in the Greenbelt.

  • Is the pond a retention or a detention pond?

The proposed pond is a retention pond. This means it will maintain a normal water level no matter the weather conditions. A detention pond is designed to drain completely.

  • Will the pond attract pollutants or trash?

There is no expectation that the retention pond will collect additional pollutants or trash. The water that will fill the pond is the same water that currently runs through the Greenbelt after a rain event. The pond just controls the flow of that water to help prevent downstream flooding. Any pollutants or trash that may enter the system will most likely stop at the pond, rather than continue (as they do now) through the creek and through residential properties. Retention ponds are also shown to assist with controlling pollutants because they allow water to naturally absorb and evaporate.

  • Who will maintain the pond?

The Village will perform all necessary maintenance on the pond.

  • How deep will the pond be? What safety measures are in place?

Current designs have the normal depth for the pond at six and a half feet (6.5’). Per state guidelines, the Village’s engineer has designed safety features into the plans. These are standard safety features for a pond like this. The pond will have a ‘safety bench’, which is a 10’ strip around the entire pond before reaching its normal water level. Additionally, it will be set back at least 20’ from the roadway, which will give space for the construction of the trail in the future, as well as additional natural or physical barriers if needed.

  • Will it be open to fishing or other water recreation activities?

There are no current plans to permit or establish these activities.

  • Are there concerns about wildlife or insects causing issues around the pond?

There are measures that can be taken to address these issues when they arise, but the Greenbelt already serves as a natural barrier for the Village and the Village wishes to retain that benefit.

  • How many trees will be cut down?

Glendale has been recognized as a Tree City by the National Arbor Day Foundation for 27 consecutive years and is committed to minimizing the loss of old-growth healthy trees.  Still, a number of trees in the area of the pond will need to be removed to allow for its construction. Once complete, the Village, through the Glendale Urban Forestry Board, will focus on native species replanting that will do well in the area and provide the natural, visual barrier that is customary for the Greenbelt.

At this point, it is unclear if any trees will need to be removed for the walking and biking trail. The Village, through participation in the feasibility study, can provide firm direction to the project Greenbelt to protect trees from removal.


Frequently asked questions - Walking & Biking Trail

  • What will be Woodlawn’s role regarding the trail, since it will be in Woodlawn?

The Greenbelt is located within the Village of Woodlawn’s jurisdictional boundary, but the property is owned by the Village, with no deed restrictions. Woodlawn has zoned the property “Open Space”, which only permits the installation of public and recreational improvements, such as the trail.  Woodlawn has already committed its $7,500 toward the trail project and they will no doubt have input on the portion of the trail that passes through their village. Woodlawn should not have a significant role regarding the portion of the trail that passes through Glendale.

  • What path will the trail take through the Greenbelt? How will it cross the railroad tracks?

These questions will be answered through the preparation of the feasibility study. This will include input and direction from the Village and the public. Right now, the concept plan is designed just to show the intention to run the trail through the Greenbelt, instead of a specific route.

  • What impact will the trail have on property values?

A 2011 study performed at the University of Cincinnati examined how the Little Miami Scenic Trail, one of the trail systems to be connected through this Mill Creek Trail project, impacted property values. Through the research performed, the researchers determined that “from a real estate perspective, trails can have significant, positive spillover effects on property values when these properties are located within reasonable distances to the trails,”. More specifically, their evaluation of property values determined “homeowners were willing to pay a $9,000 premium to be located one thousand feet closer to the trail,”.

If you have any additional questions, or would like to review these projects in more detail, please contact me at 513-771-7200 or by email at