The City Engineer is responsible for the handling, planning, oversight, and reporting on all city-led engineering projects including:

  • Handling water, sewer, and roadway related constructions permits in the public right-of-way.
  • Planning, prioritizing and seeking funding sources for future infrastructure projects.
  • Oversight of Engineering Consulting Services.
  • Construction Progress Meetings and Site Inspections of ongoing construction projects.
  • Responding to Citizen Concerns including Periodic Updates on Construction Progress.
  • Administration of the City's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permits.
  • Archives infrastructure project record drawings.
  • Plan review and approval of infrastructure-related elements of new developments.
Tim Zebell

City Engineer:
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Alex Austin 2

Assistant City Engineer:
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Address: 700 Broad Street
Phone: (269) 983-5541
Fax: (269) 985-0346

For information on the St. Joseph River - Bicentennial Bridge USGS Stream Gage, please click on it.

2022 Willa Drive & Lester Avenue Reconstruction Project

The City is currently in the design process for the Willa Drive and Lester Avenue Reconstruction Project.  The project limits include Willa Drive from Highland Avenue to St. Joseph Drive, Lester Avenue from Niles Avenue to Willa Drive and short segment of St. Joseph Drive, 200 feet west of Willa Drive.   A neighborhood meeting will be held on July 19th at 6 pm in City Commission Chambers to discuss several concepts being considered for Lester Avenue, and what to expect leading up to the coming reconstruction project.  Tree removals will be required this fall, in advance of the work next year in order to comply with environmental regulations.
Links to the letter that was sent to the neighborhood, and the concepts to be discussed at the public meeting are provided below for those who wish to learn more about the project.
Please direct questions to City Engineer Tim Zebell, telephone: (269) 985-0339, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Kingsley, Morton, Orchard and Langley Projects


In 2020, the City completed the Kingsley, Morton and Orchard Reconstruction Project and in 2021, Langley Avenue will be reconstructed.  Both projects involve a change in the configuration of the roadway and the information that follows provides some background on how and why the roadway and right-of-way will be different when all the work is done.
In early November 2018, the City held an open House to gather public input on several concepts for the upcoming reconstruction projects.  All of the concept plans included non-motorized facilities in order to comply with the City's Master Plan and the Complete Streets Policy adopted by the Twin Cities Transportation Study (TwinCATs).  Space within the public right-of-way is limited, so the addition of non-motorized facilities generally results in a reduction or loss of on-street parking.  Extensive tree removals were also required for both projects for multiple reasons including the tree size being too big for the available space, tree age, and conflicts with water and sewer services.  The tree removals were completed in the winter, in advance of the construction, in order to comply with environmental regulations.  The following links will take you to the public notice and the concepts presented in November 2018.

August 12 Meeting Notice to Project area
August 12 Power Point
Open House Kingsley Concept 3
Open House Morton Concept 3
Open House Orchard Concept 1
Open House Langley Concept 1


The Langley Reconstruction is scheduled to begin on March 15, 2021.  A public meeting will be held remotely on Zoom on February 25th at 6 PM for those wishing to learn more about the project.  Additional project information and a link to the meeting is included in the public notice which can be accessed from the link that follows.
A general summary of the Langley Reconstruction Project can be found in this one page project information sheet.

Current Road Closure and local access map can be found here:

The City intends to plant trees in the tree lawn once the project is complete.  The preliminary tree planting plan can be view by following the hyperlink text.  Property owners fronting on the construction that desire to add a tree to their front yard may also be eligible for a City planted tree.  Those interested should contact Greg Grothous (t: 269-985-0309, e: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) at Public Works for additional details.

July 23, 2021 Project Update

This is an update on the Langley Avenue Reconstruction Project for the week of July 19, 2021.

This past week, Kalin Construction laid water main south to Kingsley Avenue, installed sanitary and storm sewer through Hillcrest Avenue, and built the road and non-motorized path base to Hillcrest Avenue. Kalin Construction plans to work a half day on Saturday, July 24, 2021.

Langley Avenue looking to the south from Lewis Avenue – the road and non-motorized path gravel base are in place for concrete work next week.

Expect a bevy of activity on site next week, even more than normal, because Kalin intends to have three crews working in addition to their concrete subcontractor, Martin J. Martin J is scheduled to mobilize and complete the concrete work from Wolcott Avenue to Hillcrest Avenue from Monday through Friday (and potentially Saturday if needed). The specific limits of the concrete work include curb & gutter and driveway approaches to the north side of 2019 Langley Avenue, and sidewalk and non-motorized path flat work to the north side of the Hillcrest Avenue intersection. Kalin plans to complete private water services from Orchard Avenue to Youngs Place, and sanitary sewer followed by storm sewer installation from the south side of Hillcrest Avenue through the Harriet Avenue intersection.

Access for residents with driveways located on Langley Avenue between Wolcott Avenue and Hillcrest Avenue, and Harriet Avenue will be restricted this week. Seven days of cure time is typically required before it is safe to drive on concrete, so Langley Avenue properties impacted by the approach work should plan to park on the nearest side street from the time concrete is poured next week until informed it is OK to drive on it. Access to Harriet Avenue will be a challenge too, when Kalin lays the sanitary sewer, and then the storm sewer through the intersection. Harriet Avenue residents should park on Orchard Avenue from Tuesday through Friday to ensure they don’t get trapped in when the sewer work is underway.

The Berrien County Road Department is holding a preconstruction meeting for the Napier Avenue Bridge this coming week, indicating that project will be underway soon. We will pass along updates on the Napier Bridge project as they are made available to us.

We thank you for your continued patience and please feel free to contact Sam Jablonowski, Abonmarche Project Engineer (email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., telephone: 269-605-9653) or Tim Zebell, City Engineer (email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., telephone: 269-985-0339)

Lakeview Avenue Sanitary Sewer Replacement Project

The Lakeview Avenue Sanitary Sewer Repair Project is complete.  During the course of the work, a storm sewer that had failed was also replaced.  The santiary sewer was successfully repaired, eliminating future santairy sewer overflows and the access to the storm culvert, which often cloggs with debris during wet weather, was greatly improved as part of the project.  The total cost of the sewer repair was $89,248.80.

Concrete Pavement Preventive Maintenance Project

The Concrete Pavement Preventive Maintenance Project started on May 10th and the work is now done. The project included full depth pavement repairs, joint stripping and resealing, and crack sealing.  Full depth pavement repairs were completed on Momany Drive, Renaissance Drive, and Whitwam Drive.  The project was undertaken to keep the newer concrete roadways throughout the City in a good state of repair.  The work also included concrete patches throughout the City from water main break repairs that were made last winter.

Lead Service Line Replacement (LSLR) Projects

The 2020 Water Service Replacement Project was completed in mid June.  The City Engineering Department recently issued an advertisement for the FY 22 LSLR - Future Road Project.  This includes lead service line replacements on Broad Street from Main Street to Pearl Street, Donna Drive and Botham Avenue from South State Street to Niles Avenue.  Work on this project is expected to start early as August.

Lead Water Service Information

Please follow this link for more details. Lead Service Replacement Program

Combined Sewer Overflow (CSO) Program

Point of contact:

Tim Zebell, P.E.
City Engineer
Telephone: 269-983-5541
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Please see the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) Report for additional information at :

SAW Grant

Asset Management Plan

Public Meeting Maps


A Permit is required for work within the Right-of-Way.

The Right-of-Way typically includes the street, tree lawn and sidewalk area in front of your property. Please refer to the Right-of-Way Permit application - at the link that follows - for additional details on the requirements.

Right-of-Way Application (PDF)(revised 4-18-2019)

Please submit applications and supporting materials to Alex Austin at the contact information noted above.

City of St. Joseph and Southwest Regional Sanitary Sewer and Water Authority Standard Specifications and Details for new water main construction

Water Main Permits

Please contact City Engineer Tim Zebell for information on the water main permit approval process. 

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