The Charter Township of Northville is a vibrant, safe and attractive community. The perfect place to live, work and play! This e-newsletter is another way for you to stay connected to what's happening in your community.
Autumn is a beautiful time to be in Northville Township. As the leaves change, it is a perfect opportunity to glory in the harvest of all the hard work that took place this year. We have had a busy summer. Here's how:
NAME THE PARK WINNERS ANNOUNCED
7 Mile property designated Legacy Park of Northville

Northville Township selected a winning entry for its Name the Park contest and the Board of Trustees voted unanimously to designate the 7 Mile Road property Legacy Park of Northville. 
The Legacy Park suggestion was submitted by two Northville Township residents, Sharon Hayden and Pam Norcutt, who will share the $200 prize for the winning entry.
Northville Township Clerk Marjorie Banner received more than 100 entries for the contest that began June 20.
“Many came in with explanations about why the name was suggested,” Banner said. “Some tugged at our heartstrings, while others connected history to the park. It was a difficult decision.”
The Legacy Park name stood out because voters in Northville Township approved a 2009 millage to buy the property near Haggerty Road to preserve and protect the area, Banner said. “It is a legacy for future Township residents, a legacy for our children.”

Legacy Park of Northville is 350 acres. It is the former site of the Northville Psychiatric State Hospital. It is a long-term project with the goal of providing recreational opportunities to Township residents.

New Biking and Hiking Trails
Currently, there are biking and hiking trails on the eastern end of the property that opened in June, while the rest of the park is a work in progress. The opened trails were built with the assistance of the Motor City Mountain Biking Association and are appropriate for all skill levels. To access them, parking is allowed on the north side of Wayne Avenue or in the Schoolcraft parking lot off Haggerty. The trails and trailhead are on Wayne Avenue (north of Cross Road, off Haggerty).

Later this year, more trails will open with a connector joining the two circuits. These trails will target a more experienced hiker or biker.

To choose the winning name, the Township established a park-naming committee to evaluate the submissions. Besides Banner, those involved were:
  • William Sivy, Northville Township Historic District Commission member 
  • Jamie Grabowski, Northville Township resident
  • Jeff Oles, a Motor City Mountain Biking Association member
  • Cyndy Jankowski, treasurer of the Northville Public Schools Board of Education
  • Fred Shadko, Northville Township Treasurer
  • Mark Gasche, Northville Parks and Recreation Director 

Most of the members of the committee were part of the Twenty21 Master Plan for the park and were well aware of why the community bought the property in 2009, Banner explained.
The committee chose their top three names and whittled the list down until they unanimously agreed, a process that took longer than anticipated, reflecting the quality of the submissions, Banner said.
“We are excited to leave Legacy Park of Northville for future generations of Township residents to enjoy,” she said.
A LANDFILL UPDATE

Legislation to Stop Landfill Expansion
One of residents’ top concerns is to stop any expansion of the Arbor Hills Landfill. The Township is diligently working with its lobbyist, Midwest Strategy Group, to promote legislation prohibiting the expansion of a landfill located on a county border without the consent of the bordering community. We are trying to add this provision to proposed legislation to overhaul the waste and recycling industry in Michigan. The Township has formed a coalition with The Conservancy Initiative, Northville City, the School Board, legislators and officials to support our amendment. The Supervisor testified before the Natural Resources Committee on June 24, and before the Ways and Means Committee on Sept. 15, to advocate for our bordering communities provision.
To learn more and find updates, visit:

Air Quality Monitoring to Begin at Ridge Wood School
Another resident concern is the impact of odors on children at Ridge Wood Elementary School. The EPA enforcement order of Sept. 30, 2019, included the Township’s request for installation of an air quality monitoring system at Ridge Wood. The installation by landfill owner Advanced Disposal Services (ADS) is in process and should be completed by mid-November. The Northville School Board was instrumental in facilitating this project. 

EGLE Agrees to Protect Johnson Creek
Northville Township has been in constant communication with Environment Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) to request protections for Johnson Creek. Why? Because ADS applied to EGLE for permits to discharge landfill wastewater (leachate) and contaminated surface water from the landfill into Johnson Creek. The Township took these actions:
  • Submitted a formal request on June 25 for EGLE to deny both permit applications. The Conservancy Initiative supported this effort and ADS placed the application process on hold.
  • Continued to press EGLE to prohibit ADS discharges into Johnson Creek, including water from its retention ponds containing PFAS.
Good news. On Sept. 10, EGLE confirmed the importance of Johnson Creek. It issued a letter advising ADS that Johnson Creek is not a feasible option for the discharge of its wastewater and it needs to find alternative discharge sources. It also told ADS to find alternatives for discharges from its PFAS-contaminated stormwater ponds.

EGLE Lawsuit to Enforce Landfill Violations
The Township was joined by Northville City and Plymouth Township July 16 in requesting Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel commence a lawsuit against ADS to enforce the 30+ violations issued by EGLE. The objective of the lawsuit is to use EGLE’s enforcement powers to force ADS to comply and eliminate the constant odors from the landfill’s hydrogen sulfide.
We understand EGLE and the Attorney General are preparing the lawsuit and will file it in the near future.
To learn more, visit:

Odors in Subdivision Sewer System Eliminated
Some Northville Township residents noticed a noxious odor around sanitary manholes this summer. An investigation found the source was the landfill’s failure to properly treat landfill wastewater (leachate) to remove the hydrogen sulfide that creates odors before it entered the sanitary sewer.
A 1992 contract with the prior owner of the landfill allows the landfill to discharge up to 110,000 gallons per day of leachate into the sanitary sewer system until 2032. Odors had not been a problem in the past, but the current discharges of leachate contained excess amounts of hydrogen sulfide gas. The Township took enforcement actions resulting in an Administrative Consent Order with ADS requiring ADS to:
  • Treat its leachate before it enters the sanitary sewer system.
  • Install a 24-hour gas monitoring system that provides constant readouts to the Township of any hydrogen sulfide odors.
  • Pay fines and incur penalties for future noncompliance.
Since it became fully operational on Sept. 4, hydrogen sulfide odors have not been detected from the manholes.
To learn more, visit:
MONDAY MEANDERINGS BEGIN 
Seniors have new outing options, new vehicles 

Northville Parks and Recreation has launched a pilot program for seniors that expands the reach of its transportation area, taking trips to shopping districts, like Twelve Oaks Mall in Novi, and medical buildings. Please see the above flyer for details.

In addition, Senior Services replaced two of its vehicles with vans, which seat eight and have wheelchair lifts, so they resemble mini buses.

The new vans are a result of a regular vehicle replacement program that SMART has. Once SMART vehicles reach designated mileage and/or age limits, they are eligible for replacement. The funding comes from a federal grant that SMART receives. It takes about three years to work through the application, award, procurement and delivery process once vehicles become eligible for replacement.

These vans replace two 13-passenger buses. The Senior Services program favors the smaller size because they are easier to drive around town, which is where most of the trips transpire, and they are less costly to operate and maintain.

With these vans, Northville Parks and Recreation, which runs Senior Services, has a fleet of six vehicles, the same number as before the replacement. It includes: two vans, two 13-passenger buses and two larger buses (21 and 24 passenger,) used more for day trips. 

“We have a backup for each one for when they are in for maintenance, or when we have a larger trip with more passengers,” Parks and Recreation Director Mark Gasche said. “The vans are new, so they should be reliable and require less maintenance,” he added.
MILLION-DOLLAR MAKEOVER UNDERWAY
ON JOHNSON CREEK AT FISH HATCHERY PARK
Johnson Creek at Fish Hatchery Park is getting a nearly million-dollar makeover thanks to a grant that will transform the park, improving both fish habitat and visitor experience, as well as bolstering water quality within the Rouge River watershed.

Construction crews are asking residents to avoid the construction zone, along with the heavy equipment. They recently began tearing out the overgrowth that will expose the now-hidden Johnson Creek and allow easier access to the crumbling wall that runs along Johnson Creek. They are replacing the wall with a natural earthen berm and dredging Fish Hatchery Pond, two key steps to improve fish passage between the pond and creek and to create a more hospitable fish and wildlife habitat. At times, the work will produce loud banging noises that will be intermittent until mid-October.

The view will change, too, said Mark Gasche, Northville Parks and Recreation Director. Park visitors will notice new greenery as the full length of the riverbank’s 1,050 feet will be exposed as the project advances. The creek’s bank will have tiered levels populated by more than 250 native trees and 300 native shrubs. Once the native plantings along the creek’s bank are in, visitors should stay out of those areas until the plant material gets established, which should be about a year. Next year, you will be allowed to go to the creek’s edge, which was impossible before.
“The esthetic will change and visitors will notice a better looking riverbank,” Gasche said.
The park has historical significance as one of the largest fish hatcheries in the United States and is one of only three cold-water creeks in southeast Michigan that support a trout population. The only public access point to Johnson Creek is Fish Hatchery Park.
The Funding Source
The project is funded by a $963,090 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and administered by the Alliance of Rouge Communities (ARC), a group of local municipalities, counties and other institutions, which work to improve water quality of the Rouge River watershed. The Rouge River feeds into the Detroit River, which supplies the area’s drinking water. 
The ARC chose this project because the fish and wildlife habitat associated with Johnson Creek have been lost and impacted by several factors, including sediment-laden stormwater runoff from the gravel parking lot. Not only have the sediment deposits in the pond changed its depth, where it is less than 18 inches deep, but it also blocks the fish passage channel between the pond and the creek, where it settles, impacting the habitat in the creek as well. 
The project will repair this blockage and install a bioswale, a shallow depression that stunts runoff and removes debris and pollution, Gasche explained. 
The crew also plans to remove 2,000 cubic yards of sediment in the pond to create deeper water for fish.
“Johnson Creek is an irreplaceable natural resource and amenity for our community,” said Northville Township Supervisor Robert Nix. “This project will restore the creek banks, prevent erosion and enhance the waterway for fish. It is our great partnership with the City and ARC that made this project possible.”
Environmental Consulting & Technology, Inc. of Ann Arbor, with engineering support from Soil Materials and Engineers (SME) of Plymouth, designed the project. SME devised the wall replacement that separates the pond from the creek. The natural earthen berm supported by sheet metal pilings driven into the ground will serve the same function as the concrete wall.
The park, including the tennis courts, will remain open during construction but the baseball fields and pavilion are closed. 
Construction is expected to last through late fall pending any weather delays.
“It’s an exciting project for Northville Township and its residents, and we are grateful Johnson Creek benefitted from this grant,” Gasche said.

ELECTION AND ABSENTEE VOTING INFORMATION FOR NOV. 3
Northville Township introduces pilot program
Northville Township Harnesses Technology to Reach Absentee Voters

Northville Township has introduced a new notification system to ease residents’ minds when it comes to voting absentee. The Absentee Voter Email Notification System, a pilot program created by students from the University of Michigan, helps track a voter’s ballot through the submission process.

Township residents can receive up to four emails. They are sent only to those who provided their email address to the Clerk’s Office. The first alerts the resident the Clerk’s Office sent their absentee application in the mail, so be on the lookout for it. The second notifies the resident the Clerk has received the returned application. The third tells them the Clerk mailed their ballot to them. The final communication reports receiving the resident’s voted ballot.

The introduction of this technology comes at an opportune time as voters reported receiving additional absent voter solicitation from independent organizations. This office does not send texts or make phone calls soliciting voter applications, and any email address other than clerk@twp.northville.mi.us is not from the Township.

For any questions, please call the Clerk’s Office at (248) 348-5825.

Record Year for Absentee Ballots
Nearly 12,500 Northville Township General Election absentee ballots were mailed Sept. 23 — two days early — thanks to the hard work of Township Clerk Marjorie Banner, Deputy Clerk Katie Anderson (pictured here) and their incredible team of helpers. It’s the largest absentee ballot mailing in the Township’s history.

If for some reason your ballot has not arrived, please call the Clerk’s Office at (248) 348-5825 or stop by Township Hall at 44405 Six Mile Road at Sheldon.
Returning Ballots
Because of previously reported mail delay issues regarding ballots, you may want to return them to Township Hall by using:

  • The secure 24/7 Township Drop Box (on the west side of the building)
  • The Drive-Thru window between 8 am-4:30 pm
  • The lobby drop box or deliver directly to the second floor Clerk’s Office
  • If mailing it through the U.S. Postal Service, please mail your ballots early.
 
It’s not too late to receive an absentee ballot. You may request one:

Extended hours
For your convenience, the Clerk’s Office has extended hours for your voting and election needs. They are:
 
October 15 (Thursday) – 8 am-6:30 pm
October 21 (Wednesday) – 8 am-6:30 pm
October 27 (Tuesday) – 8 am-6:30 pm
October 30 (Friday) – 8 am-5 pm
October 31 (Saturday) – 7 am-3 pm 
 
ELECTION DAY NOTICE:
The Clerk's Office and the polls will be open Nov. 3 for the election but Township Hall will be closed for normal business, as we assist the election process.
 
Questions? Please visit https://www.twp.northville.mi.us/clerk or call (248) 348-5825.

WITH HEARTFELT GRATITUDE
Northville Township approves millage renewal

Thank you, Northville Township, for your vote of confidence in passing the 2020 Northville Township Millage Proposal. Your yes vote approved both the millage renewal and a 0.50 mill increase dedicated to maintain existing service levels within Public Safety, Parks & Recreation and Senior & Youth Services. Our success is measured by the people we serve every day in a professional, creative and responsible manner. Our commitment is to ensure that Northville Township remains a safe, viable, innovative community for years to come. Thank you for being a valued partner in our success.
DATES TO MARK ON THE CALENDAR
TUESDAY, Nov. 3
The Clerk's Office and the polls will be open for the election but Township Hall will be closed for normal business, as we assist the election process.
REMINDERS:

Water and Sewer bills were mailed out Oct. 9.

Yard waste collection ends the week of Dec. 21.

IMPORTANT NOVEMBER DATES:
Nov. 3 Election Day
Nov. 9 Water and Sewer bills due
Nov. 11 Veterans Day, Township offices closed
Nov. 26 Thanksgiving, Township offices closed
Nov. 27 Township offices closed
BOARD AND COMMISSION MEETING DATES

Oct. 12
BRA Special Meeting
7 pm

Oct. 13
Northville Youth Network Commission
8am

Oct. 13
Parks and Recreation Commission
6:30 pm

Oct. 15
Board of Trustees
7pm

Oct. 15
Northville Senior Advisory Commission
1 pm

Oct. 22
Historic District Commission
6:30 pm

Oct. 26
MITC Redevelopment Authority
9 am

Oct. 27
Planning Commission
7 pm


For information on how to participate, and because dates and times are subject to change, please visit the Township's website.
For more information on upcoming events or meeting details,
Charter Township of Northville | 248.348.5800 | 44405 Six Mile Road