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Cost of dirty water

March 6, 2017

When Oakland County made a decision to tie 14 communities together for sewage concerns – it had a choice – to build a full blown complete Waste Water Treatment Plant – or not.

Well that didn’t happen, they just found a loophole, a bypass, a way to dodge the law. The 12TownsDrain as it became known, had a media spin with name change into GWK Basin.

Just recently the Oakland County Water Resource Commissioner’s Office held a technical meeting regarding the proportionate financial obligations for the use of the GWK Retention Treatment Basin (based underground in Madison Heights, Michigan).

At one time, the cost structure was predicted, to have these approximate rates :

$ 50 Million dollars per Year = roughly $25 million STORM + $25 Million SEWAGE




Ask residents who live on the Clinton River in SouthEast Michigan about its’ cleanliness, its’ wonderfulness, – AFTER a major rainfall – when combined sewer overflows occur.  Ask those MACOMB County residents at the other end of the river, about their seawalls/docks.

Perhaps their property values matter  !  Perhaps their health and recreation matter  ! Where is the retribution for these families who deal with flooding and sewage issues ?

Maybe Oakland County, should now take ALL that money they saved the past 50 years, and actually build themselves a true Waste Water Treatment Plant — that only outputs clean water, after every rainfall/snowstorm/thunderstorm. 

CSO Overflow

The GWK Basin is merely a spray and pray , treatment facility. A 2 inch by 2inch WIDE screen “”supposedly”” catch the feces, they spray some bleach, and they pray the rain stops quickly.


The Southeastern Oakland County Sewage Disposal Authority
(also referred to as the Twelve Towns Drain District) was established in 1942
to address flooding problems in this region. The Twelve Towns Drain
District includes the cities of Berkley, Birmingham, Clawson, Ferndale,
Hazel Park, Huntington Woods, Madison Heights, Oak Park, Pleasant Ridge,
Royal Oak, Southfield, Troy, Royal Oak Township and the Village of Beverly Hills.

In 1972, the Twelve Towns Drain District completed construction of a Retention Treatment Facility (RTF), a 20 foot high by 65 foot wide structure in the bed of the former Red Run Drain. This RTF runs 2.2 miles from Twelve Mile and Stephenson Highway in a northeastern direction to Dequindre Road south of Whitcomb where it empties into the Red Run Drain.

During rain events, the RTF receives a combination of storm and sanitary flows from the 14 communities that make up the District. The RTF captures this storm water and sanitary sewage and drains gradually into the Dequindre Sewer Interceptor where flows travel south to the Detroit Water and Sewage Board Treatment Plant. In heavy storms the basin overflows into the Red Run Drain, in Warren



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