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City looking at $3M road repair project due to damage from rising water

Posted at 6:47 AM, Jan 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-21 06:50:21-05

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. — City leaders say they may need to spend millions to raise and repair roads around town due to rising water levels.

During their meeting Monday night, members of City Council said repairing flooded roads on Harbor Island and nearby areas could easily broach $3 million.

For reference, the city's total budget is about ten million dollars.

While spending that kind of money is by no means a foregone conclusion, council members did decide on at least one concrete action: spending just over $300,000 to raise parts of both Coho Drive and Harbor Island Drive by about three feet, so that, at the very least, emergency vehicles can get through.

To accomplish that, the city is putting some other projects, such as road resurfacing, on the back burner for the time being.

Cobbling together the money needed to fix the intersection at North Fifth and Adam streets and to repair the Harbor Island Boat Launch is another beast altogether.

The city's Department of Public Works estimates the former will cost somewhere between a million and $1.7 million, depending on which course of action is taken, while the boat launch repairs will be somewhere in the neighborhood of $1.3 million.

The city doesn't have all of the necessary funds on hand to make those fixes happen immediately, but time is of the essence according to Public Works Director Derek Gajdos.

"The Corps of Engineers is predicting the water levels to rise this spring higher than they were last spring," Gajdos said.

Council members said funding these infrastructure fixes may be dependent on the state. For that reason, the city is providing cost estimates to the Department of Environment, Great Lakes & Energy.

"We're giving them cost estimates, and letting them know these are important public projects that are really just the tip of the iceberg," the city attorney said.

Council members are set to meet with representatives from EGLE to discuss potential funding on Thursday.