Grosse Pointe City to hold open house for new DPW facility

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published May 16, 2021

 Residents are invited to visit Grosse Pointe City’s new Department of Public Works facility during an open house May 22.

Residents are invited to visit Grosse Pointe City’s new Department of Public Works facility during an open house May 22.

Photo by K. Michelle Moran

 The new Grosse Pointe City Department of Public Works facility — seen here while it was still under construction in July 2020 — was one of several municipal facilities paid for through a voter-approved bond.

The new Grosse Pointe City Department of Public Works facility — seen here while it was still under construction in July 2020 — was one of several municipal facilities paid for through a voter-approved bond.

Photo by K. Michelle Moran

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GROSSE POINTE CITY — Although it’s been in use for a few months now by employees, Grosse Pointe City’s new Department of Public Works building — located behind City Hall, at 17147 Maumee Ave. — will open its doors to the public during an open house from noon to 3 p.m. May 22.

“This will give residents a chance to see our brand-new facility,” Public Services Director Pete Randazzo told the Grosse Pointe City Council during a meeting by Zoom April 19.

The council unanimously approved a resolution April 19 in recognition of National Public Works Week May 16-22. Sponsored by the American Public Works Association, 2021 marks the 61st anniversary of this week, which recognizes the professionals “who are responsible for rebuilding, improving and protecting our nation’s transportation, water supply, water treatment and solid waste systems, public buildings, and other structures and facilities essential for our citizens,” the resolution reads, in part.

Grosse Pointe City Manager Pete Dame said adults and children alike are welcome to stop by May 22. While adults tour the new facility and learn about its operations, youngsters will be able to climb aboard the big DPW trucks and see those vehicles in action.

“It’s really geared towards kids,” Dame said of the truck demonstrations. “Kids love big trucks.”

There will be free snacks for children and water for all attendees, Dame said. He said the first 100 children will also get stickers, hard hats and a P.W. Paws coloring book. P.W. Paws is the mascot of the American Public Works Association.

For safety and improved ventilation, Dame said the overhead doors of the DPW will be open during the event.

“It’s intended to celebrate and honor our public works employees, who worked through the pandemic to keep our community beautiful and clean, and it’s in honor of our community for funding this new facility,” Dame said of the open house.

In August 2017, City voters approved a 23-year, $12.96 million bond for new public safety and public works facilities, along with a renovated and more secure municipal courtroom and council chambers.

The new public safety building’s opening was celebrated with an open house on Aug. 29, 2020. Dame said the municipal court — which is housed in the historic former public safety building — was operational at press time but was undergoing some “final touches” before construction is officially completed. The City Council, which has traditionally used the courtroom for meetings, will do so again once the state allows public indoor gatherings such as government meetings to take place in person again, but for now, those meetings are being held remotely.

Dame said Randazzo and other DPW supervisors would be on hand during the open house, making it an ideal time for residents to ask any questions they might have about water, trash collection and other services. Dame said he’ll be present, as well.

It wasn’t known at press time how many other City officials might also be present, but at least one council member said he’ll be in attendance.

“I’ll be there,” City Councilman John Stempfle said during the April 19 council meeting.

The open house is on a drop-in basis, and no reservations are needed. For more information, call Randazzo at (313) 885-5800.

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