Drainage issues swell in Negaunee

This Spring’s wet weather has citizens in Negaunee concerned about drainage issues on Maas Street; a problem they brought to light at Thursday’s City Council Meeting.

Residents living in the neighborhood near the intersection of Maas and Sunset, behind Fox Negaunee, say their basements have flooded for close to twenty years now causing thousands of dollars worth of damage with little to no permanent solution put in place, despite numerous pleas to the city council and planning commission.

Members of the Eastwood Apostolic Lutheran Church believe a pond behind the dealership has created those drainage issues, and they want the city to do something about it.

“The city should take care of the drain water and run it out of the area, instead of putting it in a pond that is going to eventually end up in a basement of a resident or the church,” explained Leonard Laurila, a Board Member at Eastwood. “One of our solutions is that they align the pond and meter what’s going into the water. Right now, there’s rot that goes right to the church. All this water, thousands of extra water, they’re putting in there is going to be in our basements. If they put a catch basin at the falls there, and pipe that water down over the hill toward Carp River, everybody’s a winner.”

Negaunee City Manager Jeff Thornton says the city plans to put new drains under Maas Street. While it may not fix the problem completely, the drainage would be better. The Planning Commission saw a site plan and approved it a few months ago. Thornton says the city hopes to put new drains in this fall so the problem won’t happen again until after the spring run-off.