Eminent Domain May Be Needed To Finish Delhi Path - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Eminent Domain May Be Needed To Finish Delhi Path

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Construction could start on a bike and walking path in Delhi Township by 2015, but in order to build it, the township may have to use eminent domain and pay some homeowners for the land, whether they want to sell or not.

As Nick Perreault explains, the township says that's a last resort and one homeowner, doesn't want that to happen.

Delhi Township Manager John Elsinga says the idea of extending a mile in a half pathway from area schools to Eifert road along Holt road has been in the works for some time.

"I think it's a real asset to the community to offer alternatives of getting to school," Elsinga said.

The township manager says the path would also connect to the central location in Holt which serves about half of their population.

But to get it done they'll have to ask approximately 16 homeowners to agree to work and dig on their property or buy the land from them, something the manager can't ever recall doing.

"Money has never been an issue, our issue is it's always going to be a safety hazard, what happens with our trees almost twenty years old and our very expensive rock," says Julie Hicks.

Questions that prompted the concerned homeowner to email the township board, but she's found little answers so far.

"I understand the concern of a homeowner, however we've got to look at public good versus individual good," Manager Elsinga said.

And Elsinga says he'll work with Hicks and others to figure out the specifics to make this project happen.

Now Julie ultimately does think a trail would be good for Holt schools and the community, but thinks here along Holt road is just too dangerous.

"They have a lot of easements, it's slower traffic, it's safer and it's still connected to school system."

Ultimately it will be up to the township to determine which path they'll take.

The township says they've received permission through easements for about half the properties so far and say they're working on scheduling a meeting with Julie in the next few days.

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