State Roundup


Idea would bring life to buried city streams

DETROIT (AP) -- There are hopes of reopening Detroit streams that were buried more than a hundred years ago during the city's expansion as part of the sewer system.

The Kresge Foundation recently donated $450,000 to the University of Detroit Mercy's Detroit Collaborative Design Center to map plans for restoring Bloody Run Creek, the Detroit Free Press reported Monday. Such "daylighting" of urban creeks and streams has been embraced in cities throughout the world.

"It creates a cooling effect, literally a living air conditioner for the city, and makes a softer, greener, cooler landscape," said Shaun Nethercott, an environmentalist and founder of the Matrix Theatre in Detroit.

Creeks and streams were covered up in Detroit during its rapid expansion. Its population decline in recent decades, however, has left parts of the city nearly empty and made the possibility of reopening such parts of Detroit's terrain more of a possibility.

Developer Richard Baron, a Detroit native, is working with designers to plan an ambitious 3,000-acre green environment centered on Bloody Run Creek on the city's east side. The plan could include recreation, wind and solar farms and urban agriculture.

"It's the kind of transformational effort that really could help and create some real sense of excitement in the city," Baron said.

A source of funding for the broader, long-term idea hasn't yet been identified. A pilot project has been suggested for an area east of Eastern Market.


Long, slow haul: Man plans 9,300-mile tractor ride

FREMONT, Mich. (AP) -- A Michigan man is getting ready for a 9,300-mile tractor ride through 48 states to raise money for charity.

Dave Wolfsen of Fremont also is known as "Tractor Dave." He tells The Muskegon Chronicle he plans to begin the ride June 1 and will travel on a bright red 1937 tractor with a 25 mph top speed. He hopes to go about 120 miles a day and will haul a camper.

The 66-year-old hopes to raise awareness and money for the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee and Food Resource Bank.

Wolfsen owned an agricultural equipment dealership in Fremont before selling it six years ago. He also drives a road commission truck.

Wolfsen hopes to return to Fremont, located 40 miles northwest of Grand Rapids, by Aug. 15.

Royal Oak

Woman gets jail after being found drunk at trial

ROYAL OAK, Mich. (AP) -- A Michigan woman has been sentenced to two days in jail for contempt of court after a breath test determined she was intoxicated during her jury trial for assault and battery.

The Daily Tribune of Royal Oak reports that 44-year-old Patricia Kerr was on trial Wednesday in 44th District Court in Royal Oak when a court officer reported he smelled alcohol on her breath. She was tested in the courtroom and the judge found her in contempt.

Police in the Detroit suburb didn't disclose her blood-alcohol level.

Defense lawyer Charles Evans says he didn't notice anything amiss with his client. He says she was tested after the jury left to deliberate.

The jury returned later that day and found the Royal Oak woman guilty of misdemeanor assault and battery.

Emmett Township

Bollywood music manager killed in Michigan crash

EMMETT TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) -- The Indian manager for a touring musical group was killed and four others injured when their SUV flipped as they were traveling from Detroit for a show in the Chicago suburb of Villa Park, authorities said Sunday.

Chtresh Shrivastava of Mumbai died in Saturday's crash, the Calhoun County Sheriff's Department said. The crash happened about 12:50 p.m. on Interstate 94 in Emmett Township, about 100 miles west of Detroit. The SUV went into a ditch and rolled over several times.

The musicians were touring with Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, a Pakistani musician who has credits on many movies from Indian's Bollywood studios and several Hollywood movies. He was traveling separately.

Khan performed Friday night in Detroit and went through with his Saturday night performance as well, an event organizer said.

"He was supposed to be in the car, but for some reason he got on the bus with the rest of the band," Bhavesh Patel, organizer for Rahat's show at the Odeum Center in Villa Park, told The Grand Rapids Press.

Four people were taken by helicopter or ambulance to Kalamazoo-area hospitals and were expected to survive, the sheriff's department said Sunday.Detroit

Idea would bring life to buried city streams

Published: Tue, May 10, 2011