Drain improvements throughout Meridian raise concerns in more than one aspect

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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.

Photo by Meridian Charter Township website

Photo by Meridian Charter Township website

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. The drain also has structual issues with the pond, which is causing the underground pipes to fail which results in the potential threat of contaminated water.

According to Public Works and Engineering Manager, Derek Perry, the project is estimated to cost about two million dollars to begin successfully. On the other hand, Meridian Township Trustee, Ron Styka, said he is unsure of what the costs will be and how the residents will react after finding out the price they will be paying to help themselves.

“Residents are anxious about the cost of each residence. The costs of hvac services in nj have not yet been determined, since the process for developing a drain improvement project is a long one. Some residents believe that their storm water contribution to the drain are minimal and hope for low assessments. Ultimately, the assessments will be determined by experts and after several public hearings,” says Styka.

That being said, Perry has hopes that the MDOT (Michigan Department of Transportation) will contribute a certain amount of money so the cost can be brought down to about one million dollars. This is also in hopes to potentially reduce the amount of worried residents.

Photo by Meridian Charter Township website

Photo by Meridian Charter Township website

Some residents can understand why the price runs so high for a project of this sort. A resident of Okemos addresses his concern.

“Seeing what is going on in Flint, I do not want an occurrence of some sort to happen here in our township. I know water quality issues have risen since the drain has been breaking down and I am willing to pay the price. I don’t want to be poisoned,” resident, Dan Johnson says.

Perry also says how the potential contaminations of the water in this pond development are stemming from two systems, the road salt runoff and the chemicals from the lawn fertilizer use. And this is where the potential concern comes from of the consequence to not fix the drain. The Public Works and Engineering team are designing this together.

“The project is proceeding steadily at the design and steady phase. It may take a year to fully develop. Once totally approved, the project will move steadily throughout a construction season. It may take more than one year. I do not know those details,” says Styka.

As the project begins to incline with the rest of the details, that’s where residents should be looking out for future meetings and important information.

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