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In Dragline’s Bucket

The reward of making infrastructure investment based on objective, unbiased judgements using well established facts is blatantly obvious. The just issued report of Governor Rick Snyder’s 21st Century Infrastructure Commission is founded on that ideal. Problem is, history records human experience falling far short from such perfection. Our first impression is the report was prepared by a dedicated group of scientists and engineers advocating best practices. (There’s a place for that.) They’ve prepared an excellent map but, unfortunately, we’re finding major political obstacles missing from it. We’re afraid what’s needed for successful deployment is a substantial improvement in human behavior. Turning to a snafu (Situation Normal, All Fouled Up) last Thursday Wayne County disclosed only one firm filled out its request for qualifications for completing the stymied Wayne County Jail. One firm but a good one, says Warren C. Evans, the Wayne County executive, “with expertise in building correctional facilities.” Given the history of the Wayne County Jail project we’re certain the contractor will have to use all the expertise it can get. Go To Dragline

Mixed Use Development Planned Near Wayne State


Last Friday the Wayne State University Board of Governors approved the sale of its former Criminal Justice Building to a development team, Platform llc, Detroit, for adaptation for its proposed mixed use project, called simply “Cass And York.” Full Story

Hearing Scheduled For $1 Billion Niles Electrical Plant

On December 14th the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality will be conducting a public hearing on a $1 billion proposal for a natural gas fired electric plant. Full Story

CAM Construction Classes Scheduled Into January

From mid-December through January the Construction Association of Michigan is offering numerous classes at its CAMTEC facility, covering electrical hazards, OSHA standards, asbestos and lead awareness, first aid, and more. Full Story

AA Planners Weigh Parks Plan, Hillside Center Tonight

Two items of particular interest to Michigan’s construction industry are expected to be discussed at tonight’s meeting of the Ann Arbor Planning Commission — the city’s Parks & Recreation Open Space Plan (PROS) for 2016-2020, and the site plan for the proposed Hillsdale Memory Care Center. Full Story

Tom McNamara, Construction Accountant, Passes 


A funeral was conducted last Friday for Thomas Joseph McNamara, formerly of Rochester Hills, who was a prominent accountant and financial adviser serving Michigan’s construction industry. He was 84. He was a graduate of the University of Detroit in 1954. Drafted into the U.S. Army in 1956, he was honorably discharged in 1958 and soon became a certified public accountant. In January 1960 he became a partner in the firm now known as Doeren Mayhew and served in many capacities — including managing partner — until his retirement in 1994.  Full Story

Consultant Selection For AA Connector Begins

The University of Michigan has issued a request for access to the request for proposal process for transportation planning and engineering for the Ann Arbor High Capacity Connector project. Full Story

AGC-Michigan Outlines BIM Units Schedule

During January and February the Associated General Contractors of Michigan will be presenting four units of its course on Building Information Modeling at its headquarters in Lansing. Full Story

Traverse City Considers TIF Plan December 19th

A public hearing will be conducted at the December 19th meeting of the City Commission of Traverse City for the reinstitution of a tax increment financing (TIF) plan for the city’s Old Town neighborhood. Full Story

Office Building Plans Filed In Ann Arbor

A site plan for a six story building with first floor retail space and five floors  of offices has been submitted to the Ann Arbor Planning Commission. Full Story

Huron County Considers Wind Energy Moratorium

A public hearing on a text amendment to zoning to put into place a moratorium on wind energy projects will be conducted by the Huron County Planning Commission on Wednesday, December 14th. Full Story

Historic Building To Be Repurposed In Grand Rapids

Having partnered to complete renovation of the ground floor of the 90 year old historic Kingsley Building in the Eastown district of Grand Rapids, a development team has announced plans to renovate its remaining four floors for office space and residential units. Full Story

WCA Encourages Entries For Its 2017 Pyramid Awards

The Washtenaw Contractors Association has announced it will be accepting intent to nominate forms for its 2017 Pyramid Awards competition until Tuesday, January 12th. Full Story

Old Irish Mill May Be Underway Next Summer

Last week Daniel Ross, who hopes to develop a $9 million repurpose a former sawmill and Ford Motor plant into the Old Irish Mill in the village of Brooklyn, said he hopes to have word on project financing soon. Full Story

Hearing Scheduled For Collegian North Building

A public hearing by the Ann Arbor Planning Commission has been scheduled for its December 20th meeting for the Collegian North Site Plan, a proposed 11 story building. Full Story

GR Planners Consider Medical Office Building

At its Thursday meeting the Grand Rapids Planning Commission will be reviewing a proposed conditional rezoning for a 15,800 square foot medical office building to be constructed on a roughly two acre site next to the Tabernacle Community Church. Full Story