MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP - There was ongoing discussion about the Brownfield Project for "The Square" on Grand River Avenue during the last Township Board Meeting.
The Township Board had previously approved a Mixed Use Permit for "The Square" on east Grand River Avenue to construct a student apartment complex at the parking lot site of Food For Living. However, it was recently found that there's contamination issue within the soil of the site, and the applicant requested to wave 15 years of tax capture by paying around $4 million for clean up on the site.
Many Township Board members were negative about this request, since there is no risk of exposed to volatile organic compounds just by visiting the site because the parking lot is protecting it.
"We are kind of creating the need for the clean up by putting people right on top of where contamination is. And I'm just not convinced at this point that that's the best use of our resources," said Julie Brixie, Treasurer of Meridian Township.
She also mentioned that the site already has been redeveloped and it's generating tax revenue, that there is no problem with the site if is just used as a parking lot.
Many residents also spoke up during the meeting to oppose the project. Some of them showed strong concerns about constructing student apartments due to economic and tax issues. There wasn't a lot of support for the project at the meeting.
The Township Board will continue discussing and vote on this project during the next meeting.