Churchill Downs Park Stormwater Basin Update May 26 2022

May 27, 2022 | Ward 4 News

The following was emailed May 26, 2022 by Harry Sheehan, Chief Deputy of Washtenaw County Water Resources.

Churchill Park Neighbors,

We’re closing in on the first month of construction so below is a brief update. PLEASE NOTE THAT THE PARK IS CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC. Please avoid the construction area and do not enter the park. It is not safe.

  • The site is mostly cleared and there is haul road for trucking in and out. Topsoil is stockpiled at another location to be screened, mixed and reused later. Some mature trees are green-flagged for protection but most of those are in the way of construction. We’ll protect what we can, but the site is small for what we need to accomplish.
  • The soil erosion control fence (black) is installed, and sno-fence (orange) continues to be installed. These should be the limits of disturbance for now. Final grading may occur on park property behind these fences, a few feet closer to the property lines, but that will be a final touch.
  • A crane was delivered to the site and will be used later when some of the concrete materials are delivered. You may not see it move much until then.
  • Another excavator is due to arrive and the main excavation and hauling will start very soon. This will be the primary activity for the next couple of months to create the flood storage that will better protect downstream properties. There will be a lot of truck traffic in and out to make this happen. Of course, this is weather dependent. The soils on site are clayey and get very soft when saturated. When it dries up, it hardens well, but takes time.
  • The traffic shift is in place. While the road is in pretty rough shape, the shift introduced a new set of potholes. City crews patched the potholes and may have to do so again. As most of you already know, Scio Church Road from S. Maple to S. Seventh will be completely reconstructed later this summer and fall. That is a separate project run by the City, but the project schedules will overlap.

Work is allowed from 7AM-8PM Monday through Saturday, per City code.

While they can work that entire window, that will not often be the case. Quitting time may come earlier based on weather, scheduling, need and overtime limits placed by the contractor. Saturday work may be more limited.

If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know so we can address them promptly. Thanks!

Harry Sheehan
Chief Deputy of Washtenaw County Water Resources

For more information, this is the City page for Churchill Downs park:

This is the Washtenaw County’s website page with more information about the stormwater basin project :

For questions, please contact Harry Sheehan, Chief Deputy Water Resources Commissioner for Washtenaw County (

I previously posted about this project:

Churchill Downs Ann Arbor stormwater basic concept plan Sept 2020