After years of discussion and meetings, MI Homes of Michigan (Saline Ventures), the developer of the proposed 284-unit Andelina Farms project located between Michigan Avenue and Austin Roads in Saline Township, received unanimous final approval of their Planned Unit Development (PUD) agreement, contingent upon receiving the remaining permits from the State of Michigan Department of Energy, Great Lakes & Environment (EGLE), formerly known as the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), at the Saline Township Board meeting Monday night.
Nikki Jeffries, Land Development Manager at MI Homes of Michigan, updated the board about the progress since the June meeting. She reported that the following permits have been received:
- National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (EGLE) on 7-1-19: Permit #MI0066600250
- Soil Erosion and Sediment Control Permit (County) on 7-2-19: Permit #SO12019-00097
- Wetlands Part 303 (EGLE): Permit #WRP015297
- Drainage and US-12 (MDOT): Permit approved upon receipt of bond payment and insurance
Permits that are still outstanding include:
- Wastewater collection and treatment (Part 41) permit
- Water distribution and treatment (Act 399) permit
- Final status for the Washtenaw County Road Commission (WCRC) permit
- Two facility and utility infrastructure (EGLE) permits
Jeffries saod the outstanding permits are expected to be issued within 2-3 weeks. MI Homes of Michigan requested permission to begin grading work on the property while awaiting the approval of the final permits. The Township Board declined this request.
Dan Cabage, township engineering consultant and Fred Lucas, township attorney, both provided the board with a thumbs up to take a vote on approving the PUD agreement, contingent upon the developer obtain the remaining permits. The board voted unanimously to approve the PUD agreement.
MI Homes of Michigan agreed to forward copies of the outstanding permits to Cabage. Cabage would verify that all outstanding permits have been issued and then would alert Lucas. With that assurance, Lucas would then produce the PUD agreement to the board for signature.
Alan Green, attorney for Andelina Farms, said that he has been working on a two-pronged approach with the City of Saline. A sample 425 Agreement was forwarded to the City of Saline many months ago. A 425 Agreement would facilitate annexation into the City of Saline at such time in the future when the City had adequate capacity in its public water and sewer systems to accommodate Andelina Farms. Andelina Farms expressed a desire to have the 425-agreement signed with the City prior to any houses being available for sale. To date, he said, he has not heard back from the City.
In addition, the Wastewater permit issued by EGLE included language, requested by EGLE, that requires Andelina Farms to connect to City of Saline public water/sewer systems if that option becomes available in the future. Green said that a copy of that permit has been forwarded to Saline City Manager Todd Campbell.
Beginning work, including grading and the construction of the public utilities, are expected to begin later this summer.
Braun Road Bridge
Township Supervisor Jim Marion reported that the Washtenaw County Road Commission (WCRC) has completed the repair of the Braun Road bridge. The repairs were completed by the end of June, as specified by the WCRC.
Township board members expressed some concerns about how deep the drop off was at the bridge and preferred that barriers be installed for additional safety. Supervisor Marion said he contacted the WCRC about barriers and was told “there are no plans to install barriers at this time”.
HUD Proposed Rule
Township Clerk Kelly Marion reported that she received communication from Washtenaw County asking local units of government to support a county position in opposition to the latest rule proposed by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development. Marion said that the county wanted to know if Saline Township would join Washtenaw County in opposing the HUD rule.
The new rule bans any undocumented immigrant from benefiting from public housing assistance. Attorney Lucas explained this meant that if an undocumented immigrant was living with legal residents, the entire family could be evicted from their housing. Estimates projected that over 55,000 children could be homeless as a result of this proposed rule.
The motion to support Washtenaw County failed for lack of support from township board members.
The meeting was adjourned at 7:40 p.m.