by ANDREW NEAL
Last November, a Chippewa Valley high school student was struck and killed along the dimly-lit road near the intersection of 21 Mile Road & Heydenreich, in front of the school.
It was the second fatality in the area the road had claimed in under five years, and many concerned citizens began to demand safety improvements.
On Wednesday, Jan. 11, they got some of those improvements. The Macomb Township Board of Trustees unanimously approved a proposal to install new lights along the roadway and vowed to continue their work addressing sidewalk and other safety issues.
Macomb Township Trustee Timothy Bussineau outlined his role in supporting the cause.
“Shortly after the election, I had reached out to the Supervisor and the Supervisor said she already had some meetings planned with officials in the area and it quickly became a collaborative effort between the Supervisor’s office, many department heads, and the Township and citizen group.”
“I believe that the citizen group at least impacted how quickly it got done, if not impacted that it got done at all,” he said.
The Macomb Township Citizens for Safety kept the pressure on Township officials as the process moved along, and deservedly so, celebrated the news from the Board.
“It was indeed wonderful news for our community! Our group will remain dedicated to the safety of everyone in Macomb Township,” read a post on the group’s Facebook page.
A special meeting was held before the Board meeting to review traffic study findings and address how speed limits are set.
Bryan Santo, the Director of the Macomb County Department of Roads, said under newly signed state legislation, they will be able to reduce the school zone speed limit in the area to 30 mph.
The new lights will be installed on existing DTE poles, so little to no construction will take place.
May their successful efforts help serve as a silver lining to a family and a community still reeling from this tragedy.