Houghton parking deck demolition steps closer

Published: Apr. 14, 2022 at 5:39 PM EDT
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HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) - Later this spring, the City of Houghton could move closer to demolishing the Lakeshore Drive parking deck.

The Houghton City Council passed a resolution Wednesday night. On Monday, a notice will be printed in the local paper, saying the city intends to issue up to $1.5 million of bonds to demolish the 44-year-old structure.

Voters in the City of Houghton will then have 45 days to petition for a referendum. If there is no successful petition, the city moves forward with the bonds.

“The amount of money that the taxpayers would have to invest in just keeping it is astronomical. We’re a small city, we’re not made out of money. And we certainly don’t want the taxpayers to keep supporting this piece of infrastructure that given its age, we can’t afford to keep it,” said Houghton City Manager Eric Waara.

Waara also says the city would apply for grants to pay for new development and infrastructure in the area after the demolition.

“New sidewalks, street lighting, gathering places, public art. Just turning that into a place that people want to be. Which will only help businesses that are there now.”

The city is also working with a landscape architect to find out what is possible, and if everything goes to plan with the bonds, demolition could be several months away.

“Somewhere around Christmas-time or the fall of next year we’ll be bidding out the demolition project and hopefully there’ll be word that we’ve been successful in obtaining grant dollars to enhance that project to leverage our investment to make that who area much better.”

For any updates on the project, you can click here.

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