A strong showing of 18 Neighbors made a success of the Green Infrastructure Workshop hosted last night by the Planning Commission and graciously mentored by the Huron Valley Watershed Council (HVWC).  None of the opposition showed up.
Seven Neighbors spoke before the beginning of the workshop, lamenting that the Planning Commission is "reworking" a perfectly good 2012 Master Plan because a developer's proposal didn't fit our vision for Northfield Township's future growth.
After a fascinating presentation by HRWC Watershed Ecologist Kris Olsson, all 18 residents donated their collective wisdom and local knowledge to help start mapping the "Green Infrastructure" of our township - the valuable wildlife corridors and other connections between several larger hubs of relatively untouched natural areas still found in our 36-square mile township.

Conspicuously absent were Planning Commissioners Sam Iaquinto, Mark Stanalajczo and Ken Dignan, all members of the "Grow Baby Grow" camp.  Although they gave notice that they wouldn't attend, no reason was given to PC Chair Marlene Chockley.

Thanks again to all those who attended.

(Video of Kris Olsson's presentation and the Q&A session is below.  Also the downloadable Powerpoint)

 This is the Powerpoint slideshow Kris used for her talk.  You can view it here or click through to the host site, where you can view it full screen.  The controls are straightforward.  The right arrow advances you through the slideshow.  The weird character on the bottom right takes you to the site where this powerpoint is hosted.  At that site, clicking the back-to-back-arrow icon makes the presentation full screen.  The escape key backs you out of full screen.  Or you can download the powerpoint here.  (14MB)  


Here's the Livestream of Kris Olsson's presentation edited together with the original powerpoint slides and much cleaner audio. Enjoy this wonderful event! ...... According to comments under the Livestream posting, the question and answer session which followed the presentation may be reposted later in a separate video.  You can watch the entire meeting & workshop, including Public comments from your neighbors, on Livestream.

Following the presentation, Kris answered questions for about ten minutes.  This is that.


For the sake of completeness, we posted the HRWC presentation on Youtube.  It's in HD, if you choose.  Here is the direct link..


This public input to the Master Planning process was more important than you realize.  At least one Planning Commissioner, Mark Stanalajczo, has publicly stated that he sees no need for any public role beyond that of filling out the upcoming community survey.  Here's a short Youtube clip of him saying exactly that at the March 4, 2015 planning commission meeting.

 Here's the Youtube URL.  Feel free to pass it around.

Since we're on the subject of water resources, please read this.  A new U.S. Geological Survey study demonstrates the deadly impact of asphalt sealant runoff on fish.  The research proves that application guidelines do not prevent the fish kill.  The full journal article can be downloaded here.

A huge swath of Northfield Township drains into Horseshoe Lake and into the Huron River.  Some drains into Whitmore Lake.   Here is the HRWC report on Horseshoe Creek's "Creekshed."      Here is the 2007 Huron Chain of Lakes Watershed Management Plan.

But who cares?  Asphalt is mother's milk to the Asphalt Addicts.  [Cue the cliches]  Asphalt means business.  Asphalt means progress.  Asphalt means success.


Links: Wednesday, May 20th: Planning Commission Green Workshop

Click to watch the Meeting on Livestream

Click to download the Meeting Agenda

Click to download the Meeting Packet

Click to download the Meeting Minutes (when available)

The Huron River Watershed Council website.

The workshop invitation is downloadable here as a pdf

The powerpoint slideshow is downloadable here (14MB)


Planning Commission Chairperson Marlene Chockley's meeting invitation:

Next Wednesday, May 20, at our 7 PM meeting, we are having a workshop led by the Huron River Watershed Council to map green infrastructure in the township.  This map will be a useful tool as we evaluate the current Master Plan and consider if and where any changes might be warranted for the next revision.  We invite you to attend the meeting and participate.  We value you and your knowledge of the township’s natural areas.  Please RSVP to Kris Olsson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 734-769-5123 x607 to let her know you will attend.