By Veronica Grecu, Associate Editor
More than $15 million in federal transportation grants will be awarded to Detroit Metropolitan Airport in Romulus, announced Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., in a press release issued last week. The funds coming from the Federal Aviation Administration are meant to rehabilitate one of its runways and install an infrastructure that would help reduce carbon emissions. According to Sen. Levin, the federal grants will create jobs and significantly improve the safety and infrastructure at Michigan’s largest airport.
The first phase of the Runway 4R/22L reconstruction project requires almost $13.2 million from the grants, which would also include a new taxiway and apron area. The airport
will receive $1.85 million to improve the central power system and low-emission natural gas boilers as part of the Voluntary Airport Low-Emission (VALE) program, which will boost the airport’s air quality and reduce the use of conventional fuels.
In other local news, mlive.com reveals that the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation (DEGC) declined the offer made by Chevrolet to cover the rehabilitation costs of the Tiger Stadium football field. According to the letter sent in August to city officials by Phil Caruso, promotional manager at Chevrolet, the company offered to provide financing and labor to renovate the field at the old Tiger Stadium as part of Chevy’s commitment to revitalize Detroit and contribute to the development of the city’s most hallowed baseball stadium.
In a subsequent letter sent to Old Tiger Stadium Conservancy President Thom Linn, DEGC President George Jackson stated that ceding management of this valuable piece of property under even an interim arrangement is not acceptable. In fact DEGC seems to have made a habit out of rejecting redevelopment proposals for the Tiger Stadium football field, as several other projects have been declined last year.
The Old Tiger Stadium Conservancy will meet Sen. Carl Levin later this month to discuss other ways to spend the fully obligated $3.8 million federal grant that should be used for preservation and redevelopment of the field and related business activities.