You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 5:59 a.m.

DEQ seeking comment on cleanup of ex-MichCon riverfront site where Ann Arbor wants new park

By Ryan J. Stanton


DTE Energy, which owns the old MichCon property, is proposing to remove sediment, near-shore soil and some contaminated upland soil from the Huron River and its south bank at the MichCon site near Broadway Street. The plan requires a construction permit from the DEQ.

Ryan J. Stanton |

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality will be in Ann Arbor seeking public comments on the proposed cleanup of an old MichCon site along the Huron River.

That's the same site where Mayor John Hieftje and others have big hopes for a future riverfront park with other amenities, possibly even a riverside restaurant.

"This is DTE's project," Hieftje said. "We will certainly want to wait and see what it is they want to do. I'm just expressing my hopes for the property."

The meeting takes place Tuesday at Cobblestone Farm, 2781 Packard Road. Doors will open in the big barn on the second floor at 6 p.m. for an informal discussion with DEQ staff.

That discussion will be followed by a public meeting at 7 p.m. and a formal hearing to gather public comment around 8 p.m.

The DEQ wants to hear feedback from the public on a proposal to clean sediment and riverbanks on the Huron River at the former MichCon manufactured gas plant site near the Broadway bridges and Amtrak station in Ann Arbor.


The former MichCon manufactured gas plant site is located near the Broadway bridges and Amtrak station just north of downtown Ann Arbor.

Ryan J. Stanton |

DTE Energy, which owns the property, is proposing to remove sediment, near-shore soil and some contaminated upland soil from the Huron River and its south bank. The plan requires a construction permit from the DEQ.

MichCon, also known as the Michigan Consolidated Gas Co., is a public utility and a natural gas producer that traces its roots to 1849, back when gas was still used in streetlights. It has been a subsidiary of DTE Energy since 2001.

Ann Arbor officials have been talking about a new use for the MichCon site for decades. Two years ago, city officials discussed using it as spill-over parking for the adjacent Amtrak train station, thinking Ann Arbor-Detroit commuter rail service was going to start up soon. But that still hasn't happened.

More recently, Hieftje and others have hinted at using the site for a new riverfront park. Hieftje said he's been in close talks with DTE Energy CEO Gerry Anderson, who happens to live in Ann Arbor and is the former head of the DTE unit in Ann Arbor.

"We interact as we're walking our dogs in the Arboretum," Hieftje said. "A lot of this is going to be up to DTE, but I've been working with DTE for a number of years on getting that site cleaned up and we would certainly like to have it in our parks system."

Hieftje said the city has been seeking the former coal gasification plant property for probably three decades. DTE Energy inherited the contaminated property from MichCon.

"The city has no desire to participate in the cleanup costs," Hieftje said. "We would just rely on the philanthropy of DTE Energy."


John Hieftje

The idea of reusing the MichCon site is included in the plans of the RiverUp! initiative, which has U.S. Rep. John Dingell involved. Hieftje said the The Wolfpack group of the National Wildlife Federation, of which he is a member, also is working on the issue.

Ann Arbor officials expect the cleanup to take place starting this summer. DTE has vowed to pay for whitewater improvements along the river as part of the project.

Matt Naud, the city's environmental coordinator, expects the cleanup project will go before the Ann Arbor Planning Commission for site plan approval because it will disturb natural features, but he doesn't expect that to be a significant issue.

"We're just glad this significant level of cleanup is happening," Naud said. "It's a big project. They're going to be moving a lot of soil."

Added Naud: "I think DTE has been a good partner on this."

As part of the permit review process, the DEQ also is accepting written public comment on the plan through April 30.

Copies of both the plan and permit application can be viewed at the downtown Ann Arbor District Library, 343 South Fifth Ave., and at the DEQ Jackson District Office, 301 E. Louis Glick Highway, in Jackson. The phone number for the DEQ office is 517-780-7690.

Written comments should be mailed to Ray Spaulding of the DEQ Remediation Division and James Sallee of the DEQ Water Resources Division at the Jackson office.

Shayne Wiesemann, senior environmental engineer for DTE Energy, is listed as the contact on the construction permit application for the project.

Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for Reach him at or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to's email newsletters.



Mon, Apr 23, 2012 : 2:47 p.m.

HSMP: You sound like you go back a bit regarding WW in a2 and in particular the dam removal. I'm no longer a local but I think this site has huge potential as an economic contributor and a catalyst for improvement for the NE a2 neighborhood. Regarding a ww park, take a look at the draws that parks in Reno and Boulder get. I don't think either of these are olympic-scale venues but they draw plenty of spectators in addition to paddlers. I'd imagine that in a college town, a few class II drops with natural appearances and nice predictable waves would be a pretty big draw. I hope you stay engaged if and when this all progresses. Don't buy the State's line about non-natural improvements, the state DNR is concerned about the environment to the extent that it impacts resource revenue.


Mon, Apr 23, 2012 : 2:42 p.m.

A few things: Roark, I have a fundamental disagreement regarding in-stream improvements. For one, streams are modified all the time in the name of recreation, native and non-native fish habitat, and development. some of those modifications are excessive but my opinion is that we're never going to get more people to care about natural resources when we separate humans from the rest of the living world. Secondly, the DNR modifies streams all the time in the name of nonnative fish habitat (i.e., "sport fishing"). Ask yourself why Steelhead fishing gets the backing it does (it ain't about the environment). Thirdly, this is a heavily engineered section of river in an urban area, just downstream from an engineering feature and upstream from another. And lastly, whitewater improvements can be constructed that improve safety and enhance fish habitat (some of the improvements are strikingly similar). There is no reason that natural improvements made from local or regional materials cannot be accomplished, it has been done.


Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 5:52 p.m.

@ Russ Miller: But you're one of those rower guys, right? Probably not too sympathetic of us paddlers... Rowers being of necessity organized into preexisting large groups, and paddlers tending to be loners, we never did stand a chance, although the remove-the-dam crowd was larger, and their desire more rooted in the overall health of the river. Maybe a 500-year flood will solve the problem for us...

Rork Kuick

Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 10:44 p.m.

That's not the history as written by the rowers, politicians, or developers. I'm not saying you are wrong.


Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 5:42 p.m.

@ Russ Miller: Yeah, I had just finally figured out this AM that the "plans" I printed up a while back were only an early proposal. I couldn't find any reference to the cost you mention, though. I don't know how I missed the change to the newer plans, and I couldn't/can't find them online. I've now got the DTE version, though. They are certainly a downgrade, but that is understandable, given the cost you cite. Makes taking out the dam look better all the time! But having spent over a million on that bypass, no one connected with that decision would ever reverse themselves. And they went ahead with phase 1 before they even got approval for phase 2, the whitewater! What kind of approach is that? Now we have the current stalemate, which is that the DNR doesn't like the man-made crap (and I don't blame them), and the City wants the whitewater (Gee, how could we make both parties happy? What if we took out the dam?... NAAAH!) Since the City was going to insist on keeping the dam, I was willing to settle for a man-made whitewater course. But its not clear that the DNR will ever give their approval, so we might end up with a bait-and-switch, in which, although we grudgingly agreed to keep the dam in return for the promised whitewater, we never get the whitewater. We'll see.

Rork Kuick

Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 10:41 p.m.

I'm against engineering the river as if it's some toy. "we grudgingly agreed to keep the dam in return for promised whitewater" - what kind of people were we in that part. Not people who care about the river I take it.


Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 2:03 p.m.

Until the city can assure that it can... A. keep a park clean B. keep a park patrolled C. keep a park mowed on a non-ridiculous schedule ...the last thing it should do is solicit more park space. West Park offers an excellent case study. Vandals (sorry, they are not "street artists") have tagged West Park repeatedly (the band shell, the new benches, the new trash cans, even the paved pathway). The grass gets mowed only a handful of times a year. Vagrants day camp near the playscape and overnight in the shrubs. Most of these problems, although not created, are exacerbated by a cash-strapped city's inability to provide ranger service, routine police patrols, and timely maintenance. West Park's re-engineering was an unmitigated (and still unresolved) disaster. Who among you, looking empirically at the condition and maintenance of an "anchor space close to the downtown" like West Park, believes that the city has demonstrated an ability to effectively manage more park space?

Michael Christie

Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 4:32 a.m.

Is there anyway we could get the residents of Liberty Plaza to move to this new park? Seems silly to build a new park when the City can't keep up the one right downtown.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 11:38 p.m.

Last time I looked there was a tent city behind that brick building. Would a city park introduce ordinances that intrudes on the overnight camping fun?


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 10:52 p.m.

Well, I went down to the library ad looked at the new plans, and... THEY HAVE COMPLETELY SCRAPPED THE PROMISED WHITEWATER COURSE!!! They have also left the toxic Allen Creek water intermixed with the main flow from the outlet down. The original plans, as I posted earlier, separated the two flows until the last 3-foot whitewater drop — not quite far enough for proper health and safety, but better than the current plan. And neither plan was half as good as what yohan suggested in his post above. The current "whitewater" they propose giving us consists of two 1.5-foot drops that are equivalent to the drops in what the AA PR dept. has named the "Argo Cascades," which are more accurately labeled on the plans a "CANOE BYPASS/FISH PASSAGE CHANNEL," as an option for those not up to the promised whitewater course. My BS-detector alarm bells went off months ago when I saw that the novice-paddler bypass was being called the "Argo Cascades" — what were they going to call the "whitewater feature," then? Niagara On The Huron? — and I wrote Tony Dearing, trying to get to look into this. He said that they would, but I'm not sure what they have come up with so far — they haven't written about it for a while. I encourage all interested parties to come to the Cobblestone Farm tomorrow at 6PM to discuss this with the DEQ.

Russ Miller

Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 4:51 p.m.

The 2008 concept design you're considering as 'promised whitewater' was presented to the HRIMP committee by Gary Lacy from REP but never progressed from there. It was never considered by PAC or council. Did you happen to notice the $2.7M price tag associated with the in-river portion? When REP and TSP responded to the PAC RFP for millrace work they included an optional two in-river whitewater features which PAC, and subsequently council, approved. Those ARE the 'promised' whitewater features, and DTE IS planning to build them, just slightly upstream of the original location. No one qualified to design whitewater courses ever proposed an Olympic style whitewater course in the Huron - there isn't enough flow or drop. Like all of the other whitewater on the Huron these are intended to be small, seasonal, surfable waves.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 8:52 p.m.

@ blahblahblah: Back in the day, we HAD a paddling shop down there, with free on-water demos. And it wasn't a chain store, it was locally owned. Canoesport was on Main St, though, and Amtrak didn't like them carrying boats across the tracks to paddle just above the dam. In the end, Sun and Snow Sports bought Canoesport, and has kept it alive in a different form. Although they don't do on-water demos in the retention pond out back of Kroger's!


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 8:46 p.m.

@ waterrat: Yeah, isn't it amazing? Some folks can't help themselves, and the knee-jerk whining here can be downright pathological! I especially like the complaints about DTE giving the property to the City (how DARE they give it to us?!). Frankly, I think I'll let DTE be the final judge of what is in their best interest, and I'm sure the goodwill generated in the community — present company excepted, of course — will be worth it. Not to mention the huge tax write-off.


Tue, Apr 10, 2012 : 2:14 p.m.

Since you mentioned taxes, do you know if DTE currently pays city taxes for this property? If so, then if they granted that space to the city, would not a city claiming insolvency (5% drop when Pfizer left, I seem to recall) realize less tax revenue (and actually incur more costs) if they turned it into park space? Again, if DTE is paying taxes, it would be in their fiscal best interest to dump the property and release itself from tax obligations on property it does not seem they plan to use ---- and property that may, as it sits in a floodplain, not be terribly valuable as a site to sell to a private development company. I agree with you that it all sounds very nice, but I think there are more complicated questions raised by the gift of a large piece of property that might cost the city more long term than the city has reason to believe it can afford.

Widow Wadman

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 7:05 p.m.

This seems like a good place to put an additional parking lot for Amtrak passengers. The depot is nearby. I think that it would be a good project for the mayor and City administrators to find federal or state funds to support the construction and maintenance of such a parking lot. Asit is not just Ann Arbor residents that use Amtrak, it should not be just City funds used to build a parking lot. Furthermore taxes in the City of Ann Arbor are very high but Fire Department services are minimal. There are lots of hydrants that need painting. There are long delays in getting renovated buildings certified by the Fire Marshall so that they can be used because the Fire Marshall has to visit so many sites. I think that the City should think about allocating more money to the Fire Department than to the construction and maintenance of parks.

Rork Kuick

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 6:48 p.m.

Checking MapAnnArbor, I believe much of that property can be under water during serious floods, so some of it might be in "the stupid zone" for businesses.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 3:07 p.m.

How about a big organic farm? Yummy!


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:49 p.m.

There is more than enough room for a combination of retail and park space. In addition to the restaurant, how about a REI store like the one in Denver where you can demo kayaks right on site?


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:30 p.m.

Huh? Maybe use it for something that would produce jobs and tax revenue? Maybe not make a decision until a new mayor takes over?


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:27 p.m.

Yet another park the city can't afford to take care of.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:21 p.m.

DTE - formerly Detroit Edison, has a 100 year history of land sales and donations within the city, including the four dam sites (Barton, Argo, Geddes and Superior) along with hundreds of acres of parkland along the river. The current park system and border-to-border trail would not exist today without the generosity and vision of previous DTE leaders such as Alex Dow.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 4 p.m.

so they were purchased not donated? There is a difference when tossing out words like "generosity". And i will add that removing those dams would not only have been costly but also a bureaucratic nightmare. All I'm really questioning is how altruistic the DTE decisions were versus a business decision concerning the dams. The two are not the same.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 3:42 p.m.

I believe they were purchased around 1963 and yes the city took responsibility/liability for their maintenance. Without this purchase, who knows what would have become of the dams? Perhaps some or all would have been taken out if deemed unprofitable by Detroit Edison/DTE. The city's parks plan at that time valued the dams as strategic assets in maintaining the Barton, Argo and Geddes ponds. In addition to recreation, Barton pond is also a source of the city's water supply.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:53 p.m.

your saying DTE owned 4 dams and gave them to the city? Does that transfer the maintenance responsibility away from DTE and on to the tax payers? Because if it does that was certainly visionary. Get out from under a significant liability you no longer need. Put that liability and responsibility on someone else. I don't pretend to know...just asking questions.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:03 p.m.

You know, when I lived in Ann Arbor I thought Council and the admin. were the reasons no great visions come to fruition. Council couldn't express excitement and enthusiasm if they participated in a group hotfoot. The admin is afraid to stand behind decisions. And the city likes studies to the point of exhaustion. After reading these comments, however, I think it's the citizenry. Aside from all the juvenile sniping at a free news service, what gets me is the armchair speculation of what city officials intents are. These people work for you, folks. If you want input on this development, then show up at the meeting tomorrow or quit'cher bitchin'. First, DTE is proposing to accept the cost not just for brownfield improvements, but for unrelated improvements. Yeah, their transgressions should never have happened. But moving forward this is a good solution. Secondly, state funding may be available for a portion of the work, if the developer has it's head on straight it may be able to capture some. Thirdly, the current site is a useless eyesore for residents and a drain on DTE. With whitewater improvements, an improved park setting, and what sounds like some commercial or restaurant uses, the area could provide an economic draw in addition to a vast improvement of the current setting. This is a visionary plan. I don't have any confidence that council will have the nerve to work passionately for it nor defend their work. I urge all of you who want to see the area improved to attend tomorrow night's meeting


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:31 p.m.

Restaurant sounds good.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 1:43 p.m.

Doesn't MichCon, who ownes the property, have an obligation to its stockholders to sell this prime piece of real estate to the highest bidder? If the city or Fred Upton wants it, they should buy it and not make it seem that MichCon has some obligation to donate it it. Michcon is fulfilling its obligation through the cleanup.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 7:49 p.m.

Why not? It's part of the political game. It's not the city's responsibility to make sure DTE meets any fiduciary responsibilities. I'm no accountant, but maybe the clean-up and possible donation are better for DTE's books.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:12 p.m.

good point.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 1:06 p.m.

Clarification: The "plan" that I referred to was the one dated 11/2008, which was drawn up before the DTE site became a part of the plan. I haven't been down to the library yet to see the DTE site plan yet. I'll go down there today. @A2grateful: My understanding is that all of the current cleanup talks have been assuming park use. The old Amtrk-related, parking-lot use is not what has been being discussed.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 1:04 p.m.

Is there any way to make it possible to use Greenbelt money to build the park if it does get donated to the city? I feel that would be a good idea.

Wolf's Bane

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:53 p.m.

DTE's project, as it is being referred to, requires a full clean up prior to re-development of the parcel and the embankment, right? I believe the term "Brownfield" applies here and is it not DTE's responsibility to do so and then to hand over the parcel to the City of Ann Arbor? I ask because it seems unfortunate that large corporations still don't seem to take their environmental responsibility seriously, yet constantly spin their corporate branding as being environmentally friendly and "aware?" This is a golden opportunity, I believe, to hold DTE Energy responsible for the full cleanup.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 8:57 p.m.

I agree Chris. I've given up trying to figure out this "broken lease" concept. Unless the story is incorrect and DTE doesn't actually own the property.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 7:47 p.m.

How have they "broken the lease?" I'm assuming DTE is current with any property taxes related to this site and if that's the case, there's no abandonment of the property. Not using the site abandonment. Lots of entities purchase property and then sit on it, for possible future use. This isn't a house that's been abandoned by the owner.

Wolf's Bane

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 4:42 p.m.

Land leasing agreements come from books and those books generally reside in lawyer's offices and at the County building. When a leasing agreement is arranged between two parties, say the city and DTE Energy, the city's General Counsel draws up a lease agreement (I suppose) and the corporation signs after having their counsel take a look it. As I said, I am not privy to the particulars of the lease, but it is pretty clear that it has expired or was broken.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 3:31 p.m.

No need to be condescending ("thanks for playing") I still don't understand the "lease" thing. The story says DTE owns the land. "DTE Energy, which owns the property...."(7th paragraph) I have no problem with "we the people' insisting they clean up their mess. But again where does this idea of a broken lease come from?

Wolf's Bane

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:14 p.m.

It is called a leasing agreement and since DTE Energy has all but "abandoned the property" and, in effect, broken the lease, the land, by default, should be returned to the municipality, e.g. Ann Arbor. I clearly don't know the particulars, but the point that I'm making is that I'm nearly 100% sure no one ever stipulated a cleanup, yet I think the city should hold DTE responsible. Thanks for playing.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 1:28 p.m.

"is it not DTE's responsibility to do so and then to hand over the parcel to the City of Ann Arbor? ' why do see it as DTE's responsibility to give their land away?


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:49 p.m.

Mr. Stanton: Have you considered researching the extent of the "cleanup." This is important to distinguish, as the level of cleanup varies. It also then formulates future use potential. For example, the cleanup level to support commercial use, with pavement as a "sealer" is a low level of cleanup. The cleanup level to support human soil contact, and human use (babies crawling in grass, families picnic-ing on blankets, etc.), is much higher, and more costly. It is probable that the cleanup is for the extent of future commercial use.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:46 p.m.

"We would just rely on the philanthropy of DTE Energy." Mayor, Where does DTE get its money? (Just an FYI, DTE passes those cost on to its customers like you and me) So the Mayor should have said, DTE's customers will pay for the clean up!


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:58 p.m.

DTE (and their customers) *should* bear the cost of the cleanup -- they are the ones who benefited. Every gas station, every power plant, every dry-cleaner (etc) is a potential cleanup site down the road, and those companies should build that potential cleanup into their current prices -- but of course they don't. Customers get cheaper products and services, and in many cases, the government is left to bear the cost later.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:46 p.m.

I love our park system in Ann Arbor, but didn't I just read about the drums being rolled out for a park millage increase? I.e., we cannot afford to maintain the parks that we have?!? We need public safety officers, fire fighters and road repairs. Way more repairs than are being done this summer. We don't NEED another park. Have DTE sell it to a private buyer. We can't afford the gift.

Nancy Shiffler

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 3:16 p.m.

The parks millage is for a renewal, not an increase.

Alan Goldsmith

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:41 p.m.

"Hieftje said he's been in close talks with DTE Energy CEO Gerry Anderson, who happens to live in Ann Arbor and is the former head of the DTE unit in Ann Arbor. "We interact as we're walking our dogs in the Arboretum," Hieftje said." Close talks? Close talks as he walks his dog? Do you pay the Mayor for quotes like this? Lol.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:40 p.m.

Spoken Mayor H: ". . . we would certainly like to have it in our parks system." Unspoken Mayor H continuation: (For once it is in our "parks" system, we'll use it however we want.)


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:33 p.m.

Doesn't his look like a good site for a train station?


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:39 p.m.

There is more than enough room to accomodate an expanded train station and a park. Let Amtrak continue to run it's own train station, why should the city bear the costs of running a train station for Amtrak?


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:42 p.m.

Personally, I'd rather have this be a park, since it's next to the river, and the other site be a train station, since it's nowhere near the water.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:27 p.m.

@ A2Comments: If DTE is going to give us the property, we might as well accept it graciously. Not as much fun as acting outraged, I know...

Wolf's Bane

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 2:17 p.m.

HMSP, sometimes life is a bit more complex. I hope my analogy helps you out: >

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:35 p.m.

as I read the story I don't see anything that suggests DTE is planning that. Only the mayor twisting their arms in a public forum.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:23 p.m.

@ yohan: I agree. The creek is quite high-volume at times, and a settling pond is definitely needed — the river above Ann Arbor is noticeably cleaner than the river below, and that's not how a "green" town "does it different!" The plan, Ann Arbor_final_conceptdesign.pdf, is available online (I think I tracked it down starting with an search for "Argo Whitewater"). Quoting from it, "The whitewater features will be separated from Allen Creek by a flow separator island. This will allow pollutants from Allen Creek to be separate from the whitewater project that will have full-body contact. As currently exists, flows from Allen Creek will mix with flows from the Huron River downstream of the project." The map attached to the pdf shows the creek joining the main flow right at the bottom of the last of the four three-foot drops that make up the whitewater feature. A note on the map says," DO NOT DISTURB EXISTING BANK." That plan was drawn up, however, before the MichCon remediation was proposed, and the project separated into its two parts — the fish-ladder/novice-paddler bypass (embarrassingly named "Argo Cascades"), and the actual whitewater course, which starts at the west end of the dam itself. Now that disturbing that bank is a necessary part of the remediation, I'm sure that NOT replacing some of the contaminated soil, and digging a retention pond instead, would be much cheaper than trucking in new dirt. It looks completely doable, so I hope that our concerns are addressed in the final plans.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 11:44 a.m.

A good use for that site, or at least a portion of it, is as a settling / fermentation pond for Allen Creek. This would remove a lot of the sediment and pollutants (such as motor oil from the streets and pet poop from the lawns) that come from the west side of Ann Arbor.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 10:28 a.m.

"The city has no desire to participate in the cleanup costs," Hieftje said. "We would just rely on the philanthropy of DTE Energy." Philanthropy? What political BS! They polluted it and it is outrageous that it has been left polluted all these years.


Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 7:47 p.m.

Craig: I don't agree, I think it's clear he's referring to them cleaning up the property. Regardless, I suspect we can agree that DTE is responsible for completing cleaning up the property. If they they want to give it to the city, that's philanthrophy.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Apr 9, 2012 : 12:13 p.m.

According to my read the "philanthropy of DTE Energy." part the mayor refers too is where they would give the property to the city all cleaned up. Sort of like the mayor putting a new roof on his house, painting it, refinishing the floors then giving the house to me. I've had my eye on it for decades. I'm relying on the mayors philanthropy.