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Highland Park water plant shut down indefinitely

Kate Boicourt

Highland Park’s mayor say the city’s water treatment plan will remain shut down indefinitely, while crews are working to repair serious problems that have plagued the facility for months.

Problems range from accumulating sludge to non-functioning valves and water meters. Windom says water quality has not been affected, but the problems are so pervasive that he shut the plant down pre-emptively.

Highland Park mayor DeAndre Windom says while the repairs are ongoing, the Detroit water and sewerage department will provide water directly to Highland Park residents.

“Our intent is to find a revenue source to make the needed repairs,” Windom said. “However, it is equally important to stress how costly such improvements will be, and that restoring our system will not come without a challenge.”

Highland Park has long had its own municipal water system, dating back to when the city was a booming enclave of nearly 50,000 residents. However, the now-cash-strapped city struggles to provide its citizens with even the most basic services, and Windon acknowledges the water system’s future is far from certain.

Windom has named a nine-member water advisory council to assess the system’s long-term future. There was no timeline for a decision.

Windsom says Highland Park will continue getting its water from Detroit “until we can fully assess the problems in our system and make repairs.”

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Radio in October 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit.
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