Friday, March 20, 2009

Detroit water coming soon to township

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Detroit water coming soon to township

LINDA SHEPARD C & G Staff Writer
Published: March 12, 2009
OAKLAND TOWNSHIP - This fall, work is slated to begin on a 23-mile water main designed to bring Detroit water north. The North Oakland Transmission System will tie into the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department's existing water main in Romeo and extend west through Washington and Oakland townships into Orion Township. "They are supposed to start on this in late 2009 or early 2010," said Oakland Township Supervisor James Creech. "It will take two years to complete." Creech said current Oakland Township community wells will connect with the main line. Ben- efits include avoiding costs associated with softening rusty well water. "I don't know anyone on a community well that does not have a water softener," he said. "And it will improve the environment. The salt [from water softeners] has to go somewhere." The majority of township residents are expected to connect to the Detroit water system. "This is a more desirable water system," Creech said. "It could impact development. It will make property more appealing." Connecting to community wells is a $7.5 million project that will be financed by tap-in fees that were issued on building permits, Creech said. "Older subdivisions will have a capital charge on their water bill, financed over time," he said. The main 96-inch Detroit water line will be placed in a 15-foot trench. Both the main line and the 16-inch community well connectors will be covered with 5 feet of earth. "It is a big undertaking," Creech said. "The lucky thing is that the community well system is in place." The new line is part of a larger project, said George Ellinworth, assistant director of Public Affairs for the DWSD. "It will link into the Flint transmission system and then link into the water line from Lake Huron to Flint," Ellinworth said. "A loop system." The new line originates at 31 Mile Road and Van Dyke and will travel southwest through Washington and Oakland townships to Orion Township. Two new pump stations are anticipated to be required at the Romeo and Lake Orion tie-in points. The line will help stabilize water pressure for all communities served by DWSD, Ellinworth said. "It will make water pressure more reliable in peak seasons," he said. Auburn Hills and several northern Macomb counties will see a big difference in their water pressure, he said. The line route was changed several times, Ellinworth said. "We met with the communities along the route to determine the communites' needs. We changed the route so there would be less digging up of roads and highways." "We are avoiding all major traffic areas," Creech said. The township is currently negotiating water rates with the DWSD. There is no requirement for individual well users to tap into the system. You can reach Staff Writer Linda Shepard at or at (586) 498-1065.

Caption:Illustration by Jason Clancy The North Oakland Transmission System will tie into the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department's existing water main.

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