2018-01-11 / Front Page

City’s engineering firm outlines upcoming 2018 projects, plans

City plans to join RRC program, focus on grant-funded projects

MANISTIQUE – The city of Manistique will focus on improvement and growth in 2018 – with plenty of plans and projects slated to achieve its goals. The city’s most recent endeavor and list of upcoming projects was outlined during Monday’s regular meeting of the Manistique City Council.

According to City Manager Sheila Aldrich, the city recently enrolled in the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Redevelopment Ready Community program. The RRC program is a no-cost, voluntary certification program designed to promote effective redevelopment strategies through a set of best practices. The program measures and then certifies communities that integrate transparency, predictability, and efficiency into their daily development practices.

“Our planning commission will be involved with it. Council will be involved in it,” she explained. “It will entail updating our ordinances.”

Aldrich added that during the council’s next meeting, Jan. 22, the city’s new ordinances will be introduced in draft form.

“We kind of have some of this process done, but one of the nice things about this is we have help from CUPPAD (Central Upper Peninsula Planning and Development Regional Commission),” she said, adding that Ryan Soucy, from CUPPAD, used to work within the RRC program and will now guide the city through the process. “The nice thing that comes out of it is, in the end, we have a status that says that Manistique is open for business and that we’re a business-friendly community, we have a council that has been proactive, we have our ordinances up to date, our Master Plan is up to date, our zoning ordinance is up to date.”

Aldrich explained that the process to becoming a certified RRC is involved, but that it will likely occur in the near future.

“There’s going to be public input – there’s going to be a lot of input from the planning commission, but this is the first step … the Resolution of Support for council to move ahead with this program,” she said, adding that the city will invite Soucy to a council meeting to further detail the program and what it entails.

Council members unanimously approved the Resolution of Support for participation in the RRC program.

Aldrich then welcomed Kevin Trevillian from Coleman Engineering to provide an update to council about the projects planned in 2018.

“It would take me a really long time to go through all these projects in any amount of specific detail, but the point here is just for you to know that if there’s questions, project particulars – we’re always available,” he said. “Look at just these jobs and how the community of Manistique takes advantage of grant programs offered throughout the state and federal governments.”

According to Trevillian, work on the Central Park Baseball Field Project is “nearing completion”. The update to the ballfield, located adjacent to the Manistique water tower near the old Schoolcraft Memorial Hospital site, is being funded with a $60,000 Recreation Passport Grant. Funding for the grant program is derived from sales of the Recreation Passport, the $11 annual pass that grants residents vehicle entry at state parks and recreation areas throughout Michigan.

Ball park updates will include fencing, a slight relocation of the field set-up, and parking improvements.

Another venture of the city is the River Walk Project, involving the creation of a loop around the city of Manistique. The city has been working for years to acquire the land needed for the loop through Michigan Department of Natural Resources land acquisition grants. Currently, the city is working to acquire what is referred to as the “Manistique Lumber” property.

“The Manistique Lumber acquisition … this would acquire a piece of property south of (Highway) M-94 along the river,” Trevillian said. “That is still owned by Manistique Lumber.”

The river walk and pathway is planned to extend from the west end of the boardwalk, loop around the city, and end back at the east end of the boardwalk along the Lake Michigan shoreline.

Trevillian said the city is also part of the Michigan Department of Transportation’s Local Agency Program.

“It’s a rural task force,” he explained. “We’re working on programing River Street as a Rural Task Force Project that would just be a preventative maintenancetype project … to extend the life of that pavement.”

The city will be finishing up the third phase of its Marina Project in 2018. The project has been funded through the DNR Waterways Grant Program, a 50 percent match program.

“We’re going to finish that up,” he said. “The city’s gotten an incredible amount of leverage out of the Waterways Program.”

Trevillian said this year’s improvements will include new floating docks and a new bin wall system.

The final, and perhaps most significant, project of the year, Trevillian explained, will be the planned infrastructure updates. The upcoming 2018-20 Combined Sewer Overflow Project will work to eliminate the city’s combined sewer system, which allows a high snowmelt or significant rainfall to cause diluted sewage overflows on the way to the wastewater treatment plant.

The city has completed approximately 65 percent of its CSO with past infrastructure projects, and the upcoming project will likely bring the city to 75 percent completion. The city is currently pursuing USDA – Rural Development funding, up to $6 million to help correct the CSO.

“We’re working with … USDA to try to close that overflow,” Trevillian said.

No official council action was made on Trevillian’s report.

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