Macomb County drain project improves pilot safety at Selfridge Air National Guard Base
A drain project managed by the Macomb County Public Works Office with Selfridge Air National Guard Base will create safer conditions for pilots.
Excavation continues in a 2,300-foot stretch of the Irwin Drain along M-59/Rosso Highway, to improve storm water drainage at the base and the flow in the open channel. Both will combine to prevent extended periods of high water levels in the drain that otherwise would create a waterfowl habitat and attract geese, seagulls and other birds which would pose a severe danger to aircraft if sucked into an engine.
“Our office is pleased to serve as the project manager with Selfridge on this drain project that is designed to protect the base from flooding, thereby protecting the brave men and women who fly the jets and refueling aircraft in and out of Selfridge,” Public Works Commissioner Candice S. Miller said.
The project site is in a low-lying area along the northern border of Harrison Township and Chesterfield Township, just west of Anchor Bay. Excavation of the banks, digging out sediment from the bottom of the channel and removal of vegetation began in late October. Working in 500-foot sections, the construction contractor places a long-lasting geo-textile blanket on the “new” south bank of the Irwin Drain and tops it with limestone boulders known as “rip rap” to prevent new erosion and block vegetation from sprouting. On the north bank, rip rap is placed around the taps that carry storm water from the north.
Macomb County Public Works construction inspectors estimate the project may be completed by the end of this week.
Engineering, construction and other costs are expected to total approximately $300,000 and are fully funded by Selfridge Air National Guard Base.
VIDEO: Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Candice S. Miller explains the drain maintenance project at the Irwin Drain, along the northern boundary of Selfridge Air National Guard Base. https://youtu.be/PZQVNTQJ8GU
Macomb County Public Works Commissioner Candice S. Miller stands at ongoing drain maintenance construction in the Irwin Drain. The Selfridge Air National Guard Base Air Museum is in the background.
A construction contractor uses an excavator to improve the flow in the Irwin Drain along M-59/Rosso Highway.