Biocells in the Junction Neighborhood Thriving

Officials from the U.S. EPA joined TMACOG and City of Toledo representatives to check on two biocells built in fall of 2016 on vacant property in the Junction neighborhood of central Toledo. The design, excavation, installation, and planting of the biocells was funded by a $250,000 Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) sub-grant of the Ohio EPA Maumee River Sediment & Nutrient Reduction Project. The biocells are designed to hold water during storm events and allow water to percolate through soil, treating stormwater naturally and keeping excess water out of the combined sewer system. The biocells are planted with native species that tolerate flood and drought and which provide food for bees, butterflies, and other pollinators.

The biocells seem to be functioning as designed and new growth was evident during the inspection on May 9. TMACOG Director of Water Quality Planning Kari Gerwin, said that for the first two years as the biocell is established, it’s important that plants receive gardening attention. A contract for weeding and trimming continues for the growing season of 2018.


Milkweed was just beginning to sprout up in the biocell in mid-May. Milkweed provides important food for Monarch butterflies.

TMACOG President Tim Brown with Beatrice Miringu, senior environmental
specialist with Toledo’s Division of Environmental Services, and Scott Sibley administrator of utility engineering with City of Toledo Engineering Services
(left to right). They were part of a group checking on spring growth in the Belmont/Forest biocells

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