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Macomb County inspecting Lake Boulevard Drain

By: Kristyne E. Demske | C&G Newspapers | Published February 17, 2020

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ST. CLAIR SHORES — Following similar work in other areas of St. Clair Shores and Eastpointe, the Macomb County Public Works Office is taking a look at a storm drain in St. Clair Shores and Roseville that hasn’t been inspected in decades.

The Lake Boulevard Drain is an underground pipe as large as 12 feet in diameter that takes stormwater out of neighborhoods and off roadways from Interstate 94 to Lake St. Clair and from 12 Mile to 13 Mile roads. The pipe empties into Lake St. Clair.

High lake levels mean that most of the pipe is filled with water at all times. To conduct the $500,000 inspection, work crews will install a temporary bulkhead to block out water from the lake and pump out the pipe to allow inspectors to walk its length.

Inspectors will create a video record of the pipe’s current conditions, looking for areas of degradation and potential illicit connections.

“These inspections allow us to maximize the life of our underground infrastructure by scheduling any necessary maintenance work now, before it becomes an emergency. Further, if there are places where illicit taps are found, we find ’em and we fix ’em. That’s a source of pollution we can eliminate immediately,” Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Candice Miller stated in a press release.

Inspectors discovered illicit sanitary taps in an apartment building in Eastpointe in 2017, and a manufacturing facility in Warren in 2018, which were then corrected. The county has already inspected the Stephens Relief Drain, the Martin Relief Drain and the Hetchler Relief Drain in St. Clair Shores.

If any illicit connections are found, the St. Clair Shores Department of Public Works will get involved.

“If they find something, we’re looking into it,” said City Manager Matthew Coppler. “Everybody does work together really well, and if there’s an issue identified, we’re out there working with them to get it resolved.

“It’s to our advantage to do that.”

A state Stormwater, Asset Management and Wastewater (SAW) grant is being used to pay for the work, which should take about two weeks once it begins.

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