Harrison residents speak against condo rezoning

By: Dean Vaglia | Mount Clemens-Clinton-Harrison Journal | Published January 6, 2023


HARRISON TOWNSHIP — At the Dec. 12 meeting of the Harrison Township Board of Trustees, residents of Ponchartrain Street voiced concerns over a conditional rezoning of several parcels along Pontchartrain, L’Anse Creuse Street and Jefferson Avenue ahead of a planned condominium development.

Four Ponchartrain residents spoke in opposition to the requested rezoning from R1-A and R1-D to RM-2, the zoning changes necessary to build the condos. The board voted unanimously to make the changes.

Brought forward by Holsbeke Investments, LLC, the plan calls for building 28 condominiums on five parcels on former L’Anse Creuse Public Schools land. The development group first attempted to rezone the property in September 2022, and the approved conditional rezoning incorporates changes township officials wished to see. The size was reduced from 32 condominiums to 28; there will no longer be subsidized housing; the condominiums will be built only in ranch or townhome configurations; and the addition of a sidewalk connecting Jefferson Avenue to L’Anse Creuse Street was included.

Ponchartrain Street residents voiced opposition to the rezoning and condominium project on the assumption that increased traffic from a driveway onto Ponchartrain would worsen the road’s conditions.

“This is probably going to create 336 vehicle trips a day,” resident Mike Wyatt said. “My main concern is, I don’t want those vehicle trips going down Ponchartrain Street. … My suggestion would be to eliminate the driveway onto Ponchartrain Street.”

Drainage issues on the road were also a concern, though drainage mitigation infrastructure is planned to be built.

“The thing about the drainage is that the developer is actually constructing a retention pond, so any of the water runoff or any kind of accessory water … will be routed into the drainage,” Township Treasurer Lawrence Tomenello said. “That may even help some of the surface (drainage). Not so much of the road drainage, but the yard drainage, if it’s sloped that way could also slope into the retention pond.”


Elected officials pay increase
The township clerk, treasurer and supervisor each received 2% pay increases related to inflation. While each position could have been increased by 5% in accordance with township code and state/federal information, the 2% rate keeps the increase in line with those received by unionized township employees.

Each full-time elected official will receive a salary of $84,293 in 2023.


The board passed two resolutions on Dec. 12.

The first called on the office of the Oakland County Water Resources Commissioner to better manage its combined sewer overflow events that spill into Macomb County waters and Lake St. Clair, to reduce pollution and harmful algae growths. There have been several calls and resolutions from Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Candice Miller and county governments to Oakland County to request a change to its sewer discharge management system, and this resolution sees Harrison Township join that call.

The board also passed a resolution honoring Bruce Meek for his service with the township’s Downtown Development Authority and his work within the township business community as the principal of Jefferson Street Pub.