The Grand Lakes Preserve Metropark is 60 acres of undeveloped land located south of Dorset, Ohio and is the home of two large lakes; Queen Lake and Prince Lake, the lakes are located near Mells Road, east of SR 193 and are surrounded by 240 acres of undeveloped open land, forest and wetlands.
The Metroparks would like to eventually offer primitive camping.
Currently a Preserve.
Future features: fishing, kayaking, picnicking, photography, bird watching & more. Primitive. No restrooms, water or electric.
This allotment was formed by a developer who planned out the development and filed a plat of lots with the county, sold lots, but never developed the area. It still sits as vacant land without any streets or signs.
From the oral history stand point, the allotment was surveyed, shown on paper, and sold to many out of town people in the Cleveland area. The only thing is that the lots by themselves were not buildable so nothing was done. Back in the 1960’s, then Ashtabula County Treasurer, Howard Fortney, developed a plan for those people who owned unbuildable lots and wanted to get out from under back taxes on the property to pay their back taxes and donate their property to the Metroparks, then write off the tax payment on their own taxes.
Since then many people have donated their properties to the Metroparks with the stipulation that the taxes are current. It was the hope of the Board Members to one day open up a park for fishing and picnicking along the two lakes owned by the Metroparks. Possibly for camping also.
In the mid-2000’s one of the lake’s dams broke and was not repaired due to lack of funds. This lake is now a low level swamp. Many lots are still privately owned although they are not buildable lots nor did the developer ever put in the “paper streets” that are shown on the plat.
Grand Lakes is located near 4068 Mells Road in Dorset. From RT 11 south to RT 167 East. Turn south (right) at RT 193. Turn left on Mells road approximately 1.7 miles. Lakes are on both north and south side of road.