Meridian Township is trying to fix failing infrastructure with limited resources

By Kelly Sheridan
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

In 2016, Meridian Township has several infrastructure projects planned, including road construction, sanitary sewer projects and drain maintenance. Working in tandem with the Ingham County Road Department, and the Ingham County Drain Commissioner, the Public Works Department is trying to improve failing infrastructure with the limited resources it has. Since Meridian Township is a township, it is not responsible for the operations and maintenance of their road and drain system. The government works with the Ingham County Road Department and the Ingham County Drain Commissioner when projects become too big for the township to handle. However, the township is often the first place residents call to get their issues fixed, Chief Engineer Younes Ishraidi said.

As Earth Day nears, Meridian Township has 'higher awareness of the environment'

By Ally Hamzey
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

Environmental sustainability is an issue recognized and supported by many Meridian Township residents, but on April 22, recognized as Earth Day, it is celebrated with even more enthusiasm. The township provides multiple events that promote environmental experiences and education to residents of all ages throughout the entire year, not only Earth Day. Love-A-Park Day, on April 23, hosted by Meridian Township Parks and Recreation Department is a park, land, and public space public space clean-up event. Events such as Love-A-Park Day, Earth Friends Campfire, and Chipmunk Story Time are all events that push for environmental awareness and sustainability. These events each have deeper, more resonating ripples in the Meridian Township community than just simple, entertaining events would ensue, as Senior Park Naturalist and Nature Center Coordinator of the Harris Nature Center, Kit Rich said.

Drain improvements throughout Meridian raise concerns in more than one aspect

By Lauren Captain
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

By observing the trends in Meridian Township it should come to no surprise that when it comes to projects the processing time for development takes awhile, and typically lots of money. Daniels Drain Improvement Project is something to not be surprised about either, regarding the price and times for construction and the consequences without it. Many may be unfamiliar with the project, which will soon be totally approved, but it is important for the residents to take notice on what is going on, especially with concerns for the prices and construction time, or the repercussion of not fixing the drain. Daniels Drain Improvement Project is to rebuild a drain system and the part of which is breaking down near an Okemos condominium complex. There have been many special meetings and general township board meetings as well to discuss the project, such as points of what they will do and who will be paying for it. 

This repair of the drain is due to an issue that is affecting the water servicing parts of the community.

Okemos High is cracking down on athletic concussions

By Tamar Davis
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

OKEMOS — With girls’ soccer season getting ready to start and football just months away, Okemos High School is trying to prevent and control concussions like never before. Okemos High School Football Head Coach Jack Wallace tries his hardest to make sure his players don’t get concussions during the game and also during practice. “The level of concern is very high for concussions in todays society,” Said Wallace. “My personal level of concern is very high for concussions because they happen so much in contact sports. There are times when players get concussions and were never aware of it before the symptoms let them know they had a concussion.

Nominees and winners increase for Meridian Township's 2016 Environmental Stewardship Awards

By Erica Marra
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

Though Meridian Township resides less than two miles away from Michigan State University, a look at the recent increase in nominations for the township’s annual Environmental Stewardship Awards is evidence that some community members view the phrase “go green” a bit differently than their neighbors down the road. “For the 2016 awards, we have had a larger pool of nominees than in years past, which is exciting,” said Meridian Township Associate Planner and staff liaison to the township’s Environmental Commission, Harmony Gmazel. “In years past, we usually just have two or three nominations per year. This is the most we’ve had in quite a while.” Meridian Charter Township’s Environmental Stewardship awards are held to honor residents who advocate for the environment through “local habitat stewardship, recycling, or anything in between”.

Want to recycle a mattress or clean up a park? April 23 is your day

By Katie Dudlets
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

April 23 is a big day for the environment in Meridian Township. Upcoming Spring Clean and Go Green! and Love-A-Park Day events are giving volunteers a chance to participate in a community-wide effort to recycle items they have at home and to beautify the natural areas all over the township. Chippewa Middle School’s parking lot will be filled with volunteers accepting recyclable items at the annual recycling event, from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. that Saturday. “This recycling event is a convenient way to recycle or reuse items that you may not be able to recycle curbside or even at your local recycling center,” said Recycling and Energy Coordinator LeRoy Harvey.

New apartments to be built on Grand River Avenue

By Riley James
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

No later than this spring, Campus Village developers plan to build a new apartment complex on Grand River Avenue in Meridian Township. The actual address where the new complex will be built is 2655 Grand River Ave. According to Greg Schaefer, vice president of operations, the apartments should be available in August of 2017. “We decided to propose this development because we felt there was a need in the market for more housing along the Grand River corridor. With the proposed BRT system along Grand River [Avenue] we feel this is an excellent time to increase density along the corridor by incorporating a mixed-use design with some of the existing retail.

Streamlined Meridian Township burn policies work to keep blazes under control

By Erica Marra
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

The summer before heading off to college is typically considered to be the perfect time for recent high school graduates to create long-lasting memories with their
friends. While 2012 Okemos High School graduate Colin Jackson said that he expected to create some moments he would never forget before leaving his hometown, he never expected them to be so incendiary. “The summer I graduated, there was a rumor going around that a girl I knew accidentally set fire to a field called ‘The Shire’ that we used to have bonfires at,” Jackson said. “Apparently she didn’t put a fire out all the way and ended up burning down a good chunk of [the field].”

Jackson said his curiosity led him to revisit the alleged burn site to see if the rumors were true. “I went back this year and all of the grass is like, seriously lower and you can still see where stuff is charred, so I guess it actually happened,” Jackson said.

New traffic law will penalize drivers who cause injury, death on private property

By Ally Hamzey
The Meridian Times Reporter

A Haslett resident furrows her eyebrows as the topic of the House Bill 4314, signed by Gov. Rick Snyder a few weeks prior, is brought into the conversation. The bill states that law enforcement has the authority to enforce traffic laws on private property that is open to the general public when moving violations result in death or serious injuries. The resident, who wished to remain anonymous, explains that she is a nurse who interacts with people with such serious injuries very often. “I’m a nurse, and I see people who were injured very badly on private property, and they get nothing,” she said. “They get no compensation at all.

Meridian Township celebrates womanhood in light of Women's History Month

By Erica Marra
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

March marks Women’s History Month, and the Meridian Township Communications Department is taking full advantage of the opportunity to educate community members about females and their accomplishments of both the past and present. Andrea Smiley, administrative assistant for the Meridian Township Communications Department, said that the township used a variety of methods to celebrate womanhood with community members. “We have shown the importance of Women’s History Month in many ways including sharing on social media, such as Meridian Township’s Facebook page, our HOMTV & Township eNewsletters, an intern story which airs on our government access channel HOMTV 21, and an interview that showcased female athletes, which also aired on HOMTV 21 in our sports show, ‘All Access’,” Smiley said. According to the United States Census Bureau, Women’s History Month first began on March 8, 1857, when female factory workers in New York City staged a protest over poor working conditions. Formally recognized as just one week, it was not until 1987 that the United States’ Congress formally recognized Women’s History Month as the full month of March.