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.
  • Managing the Asset Management Program for infrastructure within the City right-of-way which includes 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, and Donna Drive Reconstruction Projects

June 24, 2022 Project Update

This is an update on the Willa Drive & Lester Avenue Reconstruction Project as of Friday, June 24th.

Progress on Willa Drive – St. Joseph Drive to Lester Avenue

Storm sewer work is nearing completion on Willa Drive between St. Joseph Drive and Lester Avenue. NCSC is also switching water services over from the old main to the new main in this section of road. The water service work could be completed either today or by mid-day Monday. Once that is done, the old water main will be abandoned and this will require a water shut off on Monday, June 27th from noon until 4 PM. Homes on Willa Drive between Highland Avenue and Lester Avenue are expected to impacted by this water service interruption. 


Storm Sewer (24” smooth-lined corrugated perforated sock pipe) installation on Willa Drive

In the coming week, storm sewer service connections will be completed from St. Joseph Drive to Lester Avenue. Road building is expected to commence after the July 4th holiday and access to driveways will no longer be possible for approximately two weeks. Parking will be available on St. Joseph Drive east of Willa Drive and on-street parking on Lester Avenue is also expected to be available starting the Fourth of July weekend.

Progress on Lester Avenue

Concrete paving was completed late this week on Lester Avenue, and we expect to open it to traffic in one week, likely at the end of the day on July 1st. Please do not drive on Lester Avenue next week, even if you see light construction vehicles using it for access to complete restoration work. We typically wait 7 days for the concrete to cure/reach strength before opening it to the public, and that is contingent upon the pavement passing the required tests to assure that it safe to do so. We thank you for your cooperation in helping to insure the longevity of the concrete pavement.

Please note that Lester Avenue remains within the construction influence area and the Willa -Lester intersection will be closed to through traffic for an extended period of time. Please exercise caution for your safety as well as the construction crew and inspection team.

Concrete Paving on Lester Avenue – the road will not be opened until the concrete has met strength requirements.


Willa Drive from Lester Avenue to Highland Avenue

Work on Willa Drive between Lester Avenue and Highland Avenue is expected to commence after the Fourth of July Holiday as communicated previously. Residents with driveways fronting in this section should park on the nearest side street and walk to their home once work begins. Again, Lester Avenue is expected to be open to traffic via Niles Avenue, and on-street parking available prior to this work beginning.

We thank you for your 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 City Engineer Tim Zebell (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., telephone: 269-985-0339) if you have any questions or concerns.

Project Background

The Willa Drive & Lester Avenue and Donna Drive Reconstruction Projects were awarded by the City Commission to the low bidder, Northern Construction Services Corporation (NCSC) based out of Niles, Michigan in late January.  Construction on the Willa Drive has commenced, work on Donna Drive will likely begin mid summer.
 
The limits of the project are as follows.
 
Willa Drive & Lester Avenue Reconstruction Project
  • Willa Drive: Botham Avenue to St. Joseph Drive
  • Lester Avenue: Niles Avenue to Willa Drive
  • St. Joseph Drive: Willa Drive to approximately 200 feet west of Willa Drive (most work in tree lawn area)

Donna Drive Reconstruction Project

  • Donna Drive from Lakeview Avenue to South State Street
  • South State Street: Donna Drive to approximately 200 feet south of Donna Drive (part-width improvements)   

The preconstruction public meeting notice is available at this link.

Questions regarding this project should be directed 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.
 

2022 Broad Street Resurfacing Project

Design of the Broad Street Resurfacing Project is also underway.  The City recently received $184,000 in federal funding to help offset the estimated $430,000 construction cost.  The project limits are Broad Street from Main Street to Ann Street, and Langley Avenue from Ann Street to Pearl Street.  As the project name implies, the work consists of milling and resurfacing Broad Street over the project limits.  A small length of santiary sewer will be replaced near Pearl Street and repairs on a culvert near Public Works is also included in the scope of the project.  Construction is currently being targeted for spring 2022.
 
Questions regarding this project should be directed 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.. 
 

Lead Service Line Replacement (LSLR) Projects

The City recently awarded the contract for the 2022 Lead Service Line Replacement Project to Pajay, Inc from New Buffalo, MI.  The 2022 Lead Service Line Replacement Project will be in areas were identified in the 2017 Asset Management Plan for future construction. These areas are being targeted in an effort to reduce the coordination burden when the larger projects are underway. The project will also help the City meet the new regulatory requirements of the 2018 Lead and Copper Rule.  A map of the areas included in this project can be found HERE and a copy of the notice that was sent out in early May can be found HERE.  The work for the 2022 LSLR Project is currently underway. Repersentatives from Pajay will be contacting those included in the project to perform inspections and to schedule private side replacement work if any are found to be needed.

Two contracts from the FY 22 LSLR - Future Road Project have been completed.  This includes lead service line replacements on Broad Street from Main Street to Pearl Street and Botham Avenue from South State Street to Niles Avenue.  Work on this on Broad Street was completed this past fall.  Work on Botham Avenue is substantially completed with a small amount of work remaining due to a supplier error.  Kalin Construction Company will be finishing the work on Botham Ave in early to mid June of 2022.

The City Engineering Department awarded the contract for the FY 22 LSLR - High Lead Sample Results Project.  This includes properties from throughout the City that have particpated in the voluntary testing program and have received higher results.  This project will also include properties that may be impacted by the replacement of a nearby water service.  A small portion of water main reconfiguration on Miller Drive is also included in this project.  This work was awarded to B & Z Company.  The work is substantially complete.

Questions regarding the FY 22 LSLR projects should be directed to Assistant City Engineer Alex Austin, telephone: (269) 983-5541, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Lead Water Service Information

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

2022 Sidewalk Replacement Project.

The City recently awarded the contract for the 2022 Sideawalk Replacement Project to Anlaan Corporation out of Grand Haven, Michigan.  Anlaan Corp. intends to start the replacements as soon as June 2, 2022.  This work is part of the City's sidewalk program in which replacement projects are undertaken biennially.  This year's project will predominately be located in the southeast quadrant of the City (Harrison Ave to the south and Niles Ave to the east), though urgent repair work will be taking place throughout the City as well.

Questions regarding the 2022 Sidewalk Replacement Project should be directed to Assistant City Engineer Alex Austin, telephone: 269-983-5541, email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

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.

The City recently completed Infiltration and Inflow Mitigation Monitoring Analysis work as part of the CSO National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) compliance permit in the fall of 2021.  The study can be found here, the power point presented to EGLE to revise the CSO NPDES compliance schedule is here and a power point covering the proposed I & I removal pilot project can be found here.

Smoke testing is planned northeast of City Hall, near the Fire Department and Catholic Church, in the near future to indentify sources of inflow to the santiary sewer system.  Addtional information on smoke testing is here.

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

Asset Management Program

The first of three public meetings covering the City's Asset Management Program was held on Wednesday, March 2nd at 6 PM in City Commission Chambers.  This link will take you to a video of the meeting.  This is a continuation of the City's first asset management plan published in 2017 which established a process for the prioritization of projects.  Three public meetings associated were held in 2016-2017 as part of the the stormwater, asset management, and wastewater (SAW) grant process.  That information will not be repeated during the upcoming meetings, however, links remain posted (below) for those who want to learn more about the program.

1st Public Meeting Presentation.

2017 Asset Management/SAW Grant Information

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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