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E-M:/ A River, a Bridge, a Test for Granholm

Aug. 4, 2003

TO: Enviro-Mich
FROM: Kelly Thayer, Michigan Land Use Institute
RE: Proposed highway bypassing Traverse City

Hi Folks:

The Michigan Land Use Institute and a coalition of local environmental groups continue our multi-year effort to halt a proposed highway and bridge through the Boardman River valley and its soon-to-be-expanded nature reserve. The Grand Traverse County Road Commission now is seeking wetland-filling and stream-altering permits from the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality.

We groups have prepared a public comment, bolstered by several expert reports, providing a scientific basis for the MDEQ to deny the permits. You can find the comment and expert reports on the Institute web site at http://www.mlui.org/

In addition, the site has a new article conveying what's at stake, and how the Granholm administration's stated priorities line up with halting the highway, fixing the existing bridge, and dedicating the park extension. The former Engler administration committed funds to the county highway and to the county park, which cannot possibly coexist.

Meanwhile, the Traverse City Record-Eagle today carries a front-page article on the US Fish & Wildlife Service's July 25 recommendation that MDEQ deny the wetland permit. Please see the link below.

A River, a Bridge, a Test for Granholm
Granholm administration can stop a senseless highway

As the Granholm administration's Smart Growth council prepares to release its recommendations for curbing sprawl, the governor has a chance to embrace the land use policies she says she stands for. Her Department of Environmental Quality must soon decide whether to allow the Grand Traverse Road Commission to fill in wetlands in the Boardman River valley to facilitate construction of a wide, fast highway through that area. The county road commission proposal is a poster child...

August 4, 2003
Hartman-Hammond: Fed agency objects to bridge plan
U.S. Fish and Wildlife urges rejection of wetlands permits
Record-Eagle staff writer
TRAVERSE CITY - At least one federal agency is opposing the Road Commission's Hartman-Hammond bridge project, saying there are alternatives to the county's plans with "significantly fewer" environmental impacts...


Mr. Kelly Thayer
Transportation Project Manager
Michigan Land Use Institute

205 South Benzie Boulevard
P.O. Box 500
Beulah, MI 49617

Ph: 231-882-4723 ext. 13
Fax: 231-882-7350
E-mail: kelly@mlui.org