By Jessica Mathews /

A number of big projects, including road work and pedestrian improvements, are planned in Genoa Township this year and next.

At Monday night’s Board of Trustees meeting, Township Manager Mike Archinal delivered a detailed presentation on the 2022-2027 Capital Improvement Plan. He told WHMI they’re being very aggressive and noted the township doesn’t have any road millage and doesn’t go into debt to do big projects.

Archinal said the township has been saving money knowing there were some big projects on the horizon. The biggest is the Crooked Lake Road reconstruction and paving project. It will get paved from basically Fishbeck Road west to Dorr Road, and then the existing paved portion from Fishbeck to Dorr Road will be re-paved. Archinal said when the I-96/Latson Road interchange went in; there weren’t enough funds to complete Crooked Lake Road so in his opinion, the interchange was never really finished and this will provide a means for people to get to I-96 without driving on dirt.

Other road projects this year include the repaving of Hacker Road and limestone on a portion of King Road. Come 2023 will be the reconfiguration of Challis and Bauer Roads. That work is planned to accommodate a forthcoming MDOT project and the impacts it will have on traffic. MDOT’s five-year plan calls for rebuilding the Grand River and I-96 intersection, which was described as a disaster, starting in 2025.

This year, a boardwalk on Bauer Road will see upgrades and pedestrian crossing improvements are planned. Those will be at Grand River and Golf Club Road and at Grand River and Cleary University, as both were said to be very busy intersections where people and students cross frequently to access nearby businesses and restaurants.

At the township hall property, concrete replacement and lighting upgrades are planned. Benches and picnic tables will be around the new basketball courts that went in last year. The township is also working Howell High School’s Senior Survivor Project to provide a universal accessibility park project that Archinal said would be a real asset to the community and cutting edge in design.

The township was successful in securing a MDNR grant earmarked for recreation and thus will be acquiring 87 acres, which is next to the 45 acres at the township hall and another 25 acres owned at the end of the road. Archinal said that will provide an opportunity for future development of fields, parks, and paths or whatever they decide to do.

In the short term, he said they’re looking to just acquire the property but next year is when they’ll be looking at a park extension and likely 36-hole disc golf course. Archinal said it’s very popular and could be easily changed if future plans require the removal or another idea, then they’re not tearing down a building. He said they’re also going to try and build a 3.1-mile/ 5K trail that would incorporate the point-67-miles they already have around the township hall where cross country teams could practice etc.

A link to the Capital Improvement Plan included in the board packet is provided. Photos: Google Street View.