Project continues to reinforce sewer pipes in Fraser sinkhole aftermath | Local news

Macomb County Public Works will begin work on a $ 13.5 million sewer modernization project in southern Clinton Township this summer to avoid a recurrence of the 2016 collapse that caused the Fraser sinkhole.

A public works contractor will reinforce more than half a mile of the Macomb Interceptor on 15 Mile and Garfield Streets west of the former sinkhole in the project known as “Segment 6”, which is expected to begin with a groundbreaking later this summer will be in August, according to information from county public works officials.

Public Works Commissioner Candice Miller said in a press release the project was necessary to ensure the pipes would work for decades to come.

“We have to invest in and maintain our underground infrastructure,” Miller said. “We cannot afford another collapse or collapse of the sewers. These repairs will take us into the next generation and beyond. “

Candice Miller

Candice Miller, Macomb County’s public works director, points to the intersection of 15 Mile and Garfield Streets in Clinton Township as she describes the Segment 6 project to reinforce the Macomb Interceptor sewer that serves over 600,000 people in 11 wards in Macomb County.


The Macomb Interceptor carries the sewage that has been flushed from more than 600,000 people in the 11 communities of the Macomb Interceptor Drainage District.

The project, which was awarded to Ric-Man Construction of Sterling Heights, will cost less than expected as all three bids were lower than planned costs, Miller said.

“Of the three companies bidding on this project, I am pleased that the lowest and most qualified bid is from a local company and is well below technical estimates,” said Miller, Chairman of the MIDD Board of Directors.

Some of the funds could come from water and sanitation tariff payers in the eleven communities, but these rates are not expected to rise as a result of the project, officials said. MIDD parishes include the townships of Fraser, Sterling Heights, Utica, New Haven and Clinton, Chesterfield, Harrison, Macomb, Lenox, Shelby, and Washington.

“We assume that we do not have to raise the interest rates for our tariff payers,” said Miller in a video describing the project.

The County Board of Commissioners last month approved a resolution in support of the full trust and creditworthiness of the county on bonds of up to $ 30 million for the project, but the issuance amount is likely to be less than half.

The $ 12.5 million MIDD collection from a sinkhole litigation is being used for the ongoing $ 28 million “Segment 5” project in the area of ​​15-mile and Schönherr Streets west of Segment 6- Project used. That has freed up some funds to support pay for segment 6, officials said.

In addition, public works could receive federal dollars from the infrastructure stimulus package recently announced by President Biden, said public works spokesman Norb Franz.

Segment 6 will include some road closures, but the road should remain open to traffic during the project, which is expected to start in August and be completed in 2023. Segment 5 should be completed next year.

Officials said segment 6 will include the lining of approximately 2,100 feet of 5 foot diameter pipe along the 15 mile east of Garfield, as well as a new access shaft at the east end of the project. This is followed by lining a curved section of the interceptor 11 feet in diameter at the intersection. In addition, an “air bridge” will be installed and connected to the existing biofilter over 15 miles to alleviate the odors that have been prevalent in the region for many years.

Segment 6 Macomb Interceptor

Red areas show part of the upcoming sewage remediation project for segment 6 within the Macomb Interceptor sewage system.


“It will hopefully remove all of the various sewage odors that people in this area have long complained about and will certainly help tremendously,” Miller said.

The collapse that caused the Fraser sinkhole on the 15 mile between Utica and Hayes Streets was one of the worst infrastructure failures in Michigan history, costing $ 75 million to repair. The massive collapse of the sewer occurred 65 feet below the surface and forced the evacuation of 23 houses, including three convicted, two of which were eventually demolished.

Miller took office on January 1, 2017, days after the collapse, overseeing the excavation of a trench 15 miles the size of a soccer field and the installation of a new sewer pipe 11 feet in diameter. The project was completed in less than a year.

A lawsuit filed by MIDD over the project resulted in a $ 12.5 million settlement with three contractors working on the Oakland-Macomb Interceptor.

Miller ordered inspections of other parts of the interceptor. They showed significant corrosion of sections that have reinforced concrete pipes, including exposure of steel bars, officials said. Extensive injections were carried out in the sewer below 15 Mile Road.

The Segment 5 project, begun last fall, involves contractors digging a massive, 65-foot-deep manhole in the ITC corridor, where workers enter the massive sewer and install fiberglass-polymer pipes on 7,000 feet of unreinforced concrete. To the east, 1,300 feet of 8 foot diameter pipes are sprayed with a geopolymer coating.

“This type of rehab work is very important. The underground infrastructure may be out of sight to many people, but it can’t be out of sight, ”Miller said. “It’s like doing critical preventative maintenance on your home to avoid major problems.”

In a similar move, a contract was awarded last December to inspect 26 miles of pipelines and 363 manholes under the jurisdiction of the Public Works Bureau.

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