Doan Brook

Delisting Status

HUC 041100030503

Doan Brook, with an area of 45.29 square miles, is the 3rd largest HUC12 in the AOC. It is designated as a “Frontal Lake Erie” HUC12 in that the land drains directly to Lake Erie.

The majority of the land (98.6%) in this subwatershed is developed. This makes restoration of the waterways quite challenging, with many of the headwater streams culverted or running through pipes beneath highly urban neighborhoods and transportation routes.

The HUC12 watershed comprises three subwatersheds. In addition to Doan Brook, which is the central tributary, this HUC12 includes Dugway Brook, Ninemile Creek, and Green Creek, and miscellaneous Lake Erie tributaries on Cleveland's east side.

Doan Brook itself is the most natural tributary, and contains several watershed features from open headwaters through Shaker Lakes, and a long reach within a forested gorge.

BUIs applicable to the Doan Brook HUC12 are 1, 3a, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11, and 14a – all the same impairments found in the Area of Concern as a whole, except for restrictions on dredging.

A limited number of sampling sites for fish habitat, taken almost solely where known habitat exists, may present an overly-favorable picture of the state of habitat in the HUC12 as a whole. In the vast majority of the HUC, habitat, and the fish that would access it, are virtually nonexistent.

BUI 1 - Restrictions on Fish Consumption
in Doan Brook

This watershed is in attainment for fish consumption in that restrictions to consumption in this watershed are not more stringent than those called for in the State of Ohio Sport Fish Consumption Advisory.

BUI 3a - Degradation of Fish Populations
in Doan Brook

The delisting target for this HUC 12 is an IBI score of 36 for Headwaters (no MIwb score is necessary for headwaters below 20sq miles of drainage) outlined in the OhioEPA Delisting Guidance.

This HUC12's average IBI is 40% below the delisting target, with only one sampled site near the mouth of Dugway Brook in Bratenahl reaching the target score.

The excessive amount of stream reaches running through pipes in the western and eastern sections of the HUC12, the stretches of Doan Brook running under Cleveland Lakefront Nature Preserve and Interstate 90, and the sections running under University Circle present serious barriers to fish passage.


IMPAIRED = 3a Fish Population; 6 Benthos; 10a Beach Closings/Recreational Contact; 11 Aesthetics

NOT IMPAIRED = 1 Fish Consumption; 4 Fish Tumors; 14a Fish Habitat

Not Applicable = 7 Restrictions on Dredging (N/A);

Unknown = 8 Eutrophication

To see these graphs and charts more clearly, you can click on the graphic to download a pdf file at higher resolution.

BUI 4 - Fish Tumors and Other Deformities in Doan Brook

The metric for this impairment is a measure of Deformities, Eroded fins, Lesions and Tumors (DELTs.)
The delisting target for this BUI is an average DELT value of 3% or under (1.3% in wading sites.)

Analyzing the scores with attainment levels in mind, the average DELT value is close to .0109% for the subwatershed. This number was derived from the DELT sampling data from 2013-14.

This HUC is in attainment for BUI 4. It is to be noted, however, that this represents a very small sample of sites with very few fish to test.

BUI 6 - Degradation of Benthos in Doan Brook

The delisting target for this BUI is an ICI score of 30 as outlined in the OhioEPA Delisting Guidance (34 in lacustuary). The average of scores in Doan Brook is 39% below delisting target levels for this BUI in the entire HUC12.

It should be noted that there are only 5 credible data sites currently available in this HUC12. A meaningful representation would require more than 10 sites. Further sampling is planned.

BUI 8 - Eutrophication or Undesirable Algae in Doan Brook

This BUI's metrics are under revision, so that information is unavailable at this time. Clarification is expected shortly, at which time the status will be reportable.

BUI 10 - Beach Closings / Recreational Contact

Shoreby Beach in Bratenahl is the only beach in this HUC to which this BUI applies.

This BUI’s delisting targets require that beach advisories due to bacterial contamination be issued no more than 10% (fewer than 19 days) of the recreation season. The target must be met in 3 out of the 5 most recent years.

This BUI can also be considered restored when bacterial impacts from Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs) are being addressed under a long term control plan where CSOs are the primary cause of impairment. The Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District currently is operating under a long term control plan, including gray infrastructure in the form of retention tunnels throughout its sewershed as well as green infrastructure (as short term control while the infrastructure is built).

We will be studying what that means for attainment with regard to delisting, and whether reducing CSO discharges along actually results in reducing bacterial contamination to a level that reduces beach closings.

Currently, the beach-closing metric has been met in only 1 of the last 5 years.

BUI 11 - Degradation of Aesthetics in Doan Brook

The Aesthetics BUI is primarily targeted at "observed ongoing occurrences of sludge deposits, oil sheens, scum and other objectionable materials; specifically materials that produce color, odor, or other nuisances."

The delisting guidance allows for removal of this BUI if CSOs are a "significant" cause of this impairment, and, in such cases, if short- and long-term measures are undertaken.

Doan Brook is affected by the NEORSD’s CSO discharges of raw sewage. NEORSD has taken measures, and is taking further measures, to ensure the reduction of CSO discharges to streams in its sewershed.

Short term measures include Green Infrastructure and low-energy treatment options, providing improvements while the long term large-infrastructure plan is executed.

Therefore, removing this BUI could be expedited with an evaluation of the significance of CSO discharges to the impairment, and use of the control plan criteria.

BUI 14a - Loss of Fish Habitat in Doan Brook

The delisting targets for this BUI is a QHEI scores of 60 for wading/headwaters as outlined in the OhioEPA Delisting Guidance.

The average of scores is 3% above delisting target levels for this BUI in the entire HUC12. Fish habitat scores are in attainment for delisting BUI 14a.

Even with these apparently higher QHEI scores, the locations of the few sampling sites leading to this measurement may lead to an overly-optimistic analysis. Further, more comprehensive sampling and habitat restoration in more urbanized areas will give us more confidence for long term success of fish habitat in Doan Brook.

This product or publication was financed in part or totally through a grant from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency and the United States Environmental Protection Agency, with funds from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. The contents and views, including any opinions, findings, or conclusions or recommendations, contained in this product or publication are those of the authors and have not been subject to any U.S. EPA or Ohio EPA peer or administrative review and may not necessarily reflect the views of either Agency, and no official endorsement should be inferred.

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