Oct 12, 2021

Soil Being Removed from a Detroit, Michigan, Park for Storm Water Retention Project

This project will include water system and sewer system upgrades.

detroit water

Soil is being removed from a westside Detroit, Michigan, park as part of a storm water retention project to reduce flooding in streets and basements during heavy rainfall.

The project at Rouge Park is anticipated to capture nearly 100 million gallons of storm water each year, according to Detroit Water and Sewerage Deputy Director and Chief Engineer Palencia Mobley, reported Detroit Free Press.

This would also lessen reliance on the city’s combined sewer system and will include water system and sewer system upgrades.

The system will capture rain runoff from streets around 1,200 homes and storm water will be stored in two basins and filtered before being discharged into Rouge River, reported Detroit Free Press.


Neighborhoods around the park have experienced chronic flooding for years, and thousands of basements flooded in the city and across parts of southeastern Michigan after six inches of rain fell between June 25 and 26, reported AP News. 

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency for Detroit and other communities after this rain event. The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department received approximately 13,000 requests for service, said Gary Brown, the utility’s director, reported AP News.

Construction for the project aims to start in early 2022 and is expected to be completed within five years. It will include water system and sewer system upgrades, according to Detroit Free Press.

About 120,000 cubic yards (91,746 cubic meters) of Rouge Park soil will be hauled about 12 miles (19.3 kilometers) and reused at another park along the Detroit River. Reusing instead of disposing of the soil will save the water department $80,000, according to officials.

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