Status Update
Oakland County Purchasing released a second request for bids for the Mill Pond Dam removal and restoration project. The closing date for bids is November 15, 2022. It is anticipated that bids and staff recommendations will be reviewed at the December 7 Oakland County Parks & Recreation Commission Meeting, and the December 8 Springfield Township Board Meeting.

Initial Project Bidding - March 2022
The Mill Pond Dam removal, river corridor restoration, and roadway safety improvements project proceeded to bid release in February and a total of four bids were submitted to Oakland County Purchasing on March 22, 2022. As a result of the current economic state, submitted pricing was considerably higher than the engineer’s estimate of cost prepared last fall. Further, due to supply chain issues the culvert could not be delivered in time to guarantee that construction would be complete before frost law restrictions are imposed.

For these reasons, the Oakland County Parks & Recreation Commission received and accepted a recommendation from the project team at their meeting on May 4 to rebid this fall for construction in summer 2023. The Springfield Township Board concurred in the decision to rebid and delay the project at their meeting on May 12.

$830,000 in grant funds have been awarded for the dam removal and restoration phase of this project. Additionally, the Township has committed four years of Oakland County Tri-Party Project allocations to complete the roadway safety improvements. The project team is actively seeking additional funding so the budget and economic conditions can be reevaluated in August for a decision to release bids again this fall.

For additional information on the project, please see the survey and background details below or you may review reports and materials available in the side menu bar.

Survey Results
The first public outreach effort of the Preliminary Engineering and Park Conceptual Planning phase was conducted as an online Outreach Presentation in January 2021. The presentation and meeting materials were made available through this webpage. A project display also was posted at the Springfield Township Civic Center beginning in December 2020 so citizens could review the plans and renderings in person. A survey was conducted during January and February 2021 to obtain public comment and questions on the draft preliminary engineering and concept plans for future park enhancements.  The survey collected 110 responses and an additional 5 e-mailed comments and 1 letter were received.  The documents linked below provide detailed reports of the survey responses and questions.

Springfield Township and Oakland County have extensively explored options for the Davisburg Mill Pond Dam. Due to the age of the dam and based on information from a 2011 engineering study and 2015 video inspection, the Mill Pond Dam has significant deficiencies and associated safety/liability issues.

A feasibility study was commissioned in October 2018 to identify various alternatives for the dam. The study included two public informational meetings, held in March and May of 2019, to present preliminary findings and receive public input.  The Feasibility Study resulted in eight viable alternatives in two scenarios to either replace or remove the dam. During a Special Meeting held on June 6, 2019, the Springfield Township Board carefully analyzed every alternative based upon several factors including historical significance, effect on safety, water wells, and real estate values, recreational benefits, environmental considerations, and cost.  The Township Board ultimately recommended dam removal and restoration of the river corridor. The County concurred in that recommendation.

In the fall of 2019, the project moved to the preliminary engineering and conceptual park design phase. The consultant has collected data to determine how to engineer the stream channel and arch culvert at the Davisburg Road crossing and has prepared plans for the restoration of the river corridor. Concurrently, the consultant is offering recommendations for future enhancement to the surrounding park properties.

The Oakland County Parks & Recreation Commission, Springfield Township Board, and Springfield Township Park Commission reviewed the preliminary engineering plans and conceptual park designs at their meetings in October 2020 and approved presenting the plans to the public for review and comment.

Due to restrictions on public gatherings in 2020 to June 2021, the first public outreach effort of the Preliminary Engineering and Park Conceptual Planning phase was conducted as an online presentation in January 2021. The full recording of the presentation and meeting materials are available in the Public Information Meetings & Materials tab.

On August 31, 2021, the final Public Outreach Meeting of the preliminary engineering and park conceptual planning phase was held at Springfield Oaks. The presentation included an overview of the 100% complete design engineering drawings, engineer’s opinion of construction cost, review of the restoration process and natural resources benefits, and revised concept plans for future park redevelopment. Following the presentation was a one-hour Q&A session.

At their September 2021 meetings, the Oakland County Parks & Recreation Commission and the Springfield Township Board reviewed the final engineering drawings, conceptual park plans, and the Public Engagement Report, and approved proceeding to the next phase of the project for construction drawings, specifications, permitting, and bidding.

A permit application process was completed through the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, Water Resources Division (WRD) during fall 2021 through spring 2022. Bids were released through Oakland County Purchasing on February 22, 2022 and a total of four bids were submitted to Oakland County Purchasing on March 22, 2022.