The New Street parking lot has not been repaved since 2003.

The New Street parking lot has not been repaved since 2003.

Photo by Dean Vaglia

Parking lot study in the works for Mount Clemens

By: Dean Vaglia | Mount Clemens-Clinton-Harrison Journal | Published September 14, 2023


MOUNT CLEMENS — Though situated in the heart of Macomb County, going to Mount Clemens can feel like a trip to the moon, depending on what parking lot you go to.

City officials are aware of the lunar state of city parking and are working to bring drivers back to Earth by embarking on an engineering study of the city’s lots.

Mount Clemens parking lots have largely gone without major renovations since 2003, when a parking lot improvement bond was last taken out.

“We just made our last payment, and we’re now out from under this debt obligation but we also have all these parking lots that need attention,” said mayor Laura Kropp. “Now we can redirect those parking funds to pay for a study that says, ‘This is the most immediate need,’ and will prioritize where those parking lots need the most attention, where we need to spend the most resources and in what time frame.”

Anderson, Eckstein & Westrick, the city’s contracted engineering firm, will give attention to each of the city’s parking lots, but the engineers will not begin the parking study until several other studies are completed.

“The engineering firm right now is working on downtown studies to show us what infrastructure in terms of roads and sidewalks need to be done,” Kropp said. “Once they complete that, then they’ll begin the study on the parking lots.”

Studies on the sewers and other parts of underground infrastructure have already been completed, meaning the city will eventually have a comprehensive report of its whole infrastructure it can use to plan capital improvement projects. When that report will be ready and when work can begin, however, are less concrete.

“The study will dictate when that work will be done and how it will be done,” said city manager Gregg Shipman.

Funding is also a question, depending on what avenues the city pursues, such as securing grants or taking out a bond.

Even without a study, city officials are aware of certain parking lots in need of attention. The asphalt and concrete quilt of the New Street parking lot is one such lot, though this will be repaired as part of next year’s Cherry Street Mall and Macomb Place redevelopments.

“The New Street lot is our first priority, and it was also the only lot not done in our last go-around of parking lot repairs,” Kropp said.

The Roskopp parking lot is another area of interest as it is the city’s largest lot and may become part of an Artspace live-work complex, assuming discussions with the city and Artspace bear fruit.

Though the parking study and the work that will come of it is a far way off, residents are able to contact the city with road and parking concerns by using the “report issues” form linked at the bottom of every webpage.

“That ‘report a site’ gets emailed to someone that monitors it daily,” Shipman said. “If we receive one today, before the end of the day, somebody would be out there to look at it.”