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E-M:/ MUCC Humbug Action Alert



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Enviro-Mich message from "Alex J. Sagady & Associates" <ajs@sagady.com>
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Date: Wed, 09 Sep 1998 08:20:27 -0700
From: MUCC <mucc@voyager.net>
Reply-To: mucc@voyager.net
Organization: Michigan United Conservation Clu
X-Mailer: Mozilla 3.01C-KIT  (Win95; U; 16bit)
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To: enviro-mich@great-lakes.net
Subject: Humbug Marsh Reminder Alert
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HUMBUG  ACTION  ALERT

The permit application (MDEQ permit #98-10-0328 and US ACE permit
#88-007-079-4D/98-10-328) for the Made In Detroit development should be
vigorously opposed by all environmental organizations and concerned
individuals. Written letters to the  MDEQ and the US Army Corps of
Engineers is the most effective way of voicing opposition although presence
at the
hearing is a help.

The following issues are some of the problems associated with this
project and should be addressed both at the public hearing and in writing.

The basic premise is that this project will destroy the last and largest
of the ancient geological coastal wetlands between the Flats of the St.
Clair and Toledo.  Loss of the habitat will also destroy  the greatest biologic
diversity in the river,  a  resting area in the Eastern Great Lakes
Flyway,  a hunting area for osprey and eagles, a fishery including a fish
nursery
area, a major public hunting area, will further exclude the public from the
river, a resting area for migrating neo-tropical birds,  and probably will
not be
a sustainable development because it does not address many basic human
intuitive drives such as space and non-motorized mobility.

Do not undervalue the finality of "last."

1  --  Granting the permit to alter a conservation easement and fill a
Great Lakes  bottom land at the request of a developer will set an ominous
precedent for all  conservation easements

2 --  The easement clearly states no structures be placed within the
easement but a 600 foot bridge for access to Humbug Island is planned to
cross the
easement 

3  --  Already protected Great Lakes bottom lands should not be part of
any mitigation  or replacement package --  most of the areas proposed as
mitigation
sites are in  regulated bottom lands

4  --  There is no construction buffer along the easement -  current
plans show many  building foot prints and roads contiguous with the easement
edge

5  -- The easement states the "grantor" i.e. Made in Detroit , "shall
maintain the  easement premises in their natural and undeveloped condition"
-- the
Made In  Detroit proposal would put the enforcement of the easement in the hands
of the  homeowners or the condominium association.    Nothing like having
the wolf 
sleep in the hen house to protect the hens.

6 --   There is no way of salvaging any vegetation in the uplands during
construction -  This is the primary destruction!  Lot sizes on the mainland
are 65 feet
wide and  vary from 100 to 140 feet long   -  on the island they are 106 feet
wide and 170  feet deep --  add roads and utilities to such density and
there should
be room   for a daisy   --    somewhere

7   --  The secondary effects of altered vegetation and leaf cover,
altered soil  from fill and construction, altered drainage, chemical
run-off, normal
human  incursion and other non-point pollution will complete the destruction
of the area.   Yet scientific documentation regarding secondary effects has been
difficult to  find  - the best example we have found is Chesapeake Bay and
the Cedar
River  mess.   This is a crucial area of opposition and disparately needs
strong   scientific support!

8   --  The following state endangered, threatened or species of special
concern have  been found in the area --   pugnose minnow, fire pink, small 
mouthed salamander, eastern fox snake,   osprey, bald eagle, Caspian tern, 
swamp rose mallow, black crowned heron,   great egret and of special 
interest are sweet grass and wild celery

The permit notice states " we are not aware of the presence of any
listed  species or critical habitat at or in the vicinity of the work site."

9   -- The golf course will be the only one on the Detroit River that
does not have any  containment walls to stop erosion and chemical run-off
from entering
the Handler Drain and ultimately the river and the canals in Gibraltar

10 --   Steel bulk heading along lot lines will be necessary to prevent
erosion and  siltation of the easement from the considerable fill needed to
bring
houses up to an acceptable elevation

11  --    The causeway to the  bridge is 15 feet high with a slope of 3
to 1 and is contained by grouted cobblestones and the water line is under the
bottom  --is this shaky engineering?

12  --  "Gibraltar Bay" is the US Geologic designation for the bay at
the south end of  Grosse Ile yet Made in Detroit is naming  their
development "Gibraltar
Bay" confusing people as to the true location of the marsh  --  Misleading
advertising!

13   -- No one is addressing the issues involved in having an entrance
and the utilities  entering through Trenton to service Gibraltar.  Nor are
they addressing
the  engineering involved in getting the utilities to the island through the
easement

PLEASE ATTEND THE PUBLIC HEARING AT CARLSON HIGH SCHOOL ON WEST
JEFFERSON IN GIBRALTAR ON SEPTEMBER 15 AT 7:00 PM
ALSO PLEASE WRITE TO THE FOLLOWING BEFORE SEPTEMBER 30

RICHARD POWERS, ACTING CHIEF                                   DAVID GESL
LAND AND WATER DIVISION
DETROIT DISTRICT
MICHIGAN DEPT. OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY           USA CORPS OF ENGINEERS
P.O. BOX 30458
PO BOX 1027
LANSING, MI 48909
DETROIT, MI 48231



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