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Planning and Economic Development

Contact: McKenzi Bergmoser, Lake St. Clair CISMA



August 28, 2019

Phragmites control and removal along Macomb County road right-of-ways to take place in September

The Lake St. Clair Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (LSC CISMA) has announced that it will work with a contractor to continue control of phragmites along road right-of-ways in five Macomb County communities. The work will take place in mid to late September in Clinton Township, Harrison Township, Ray Township, Shelby Township and Washington Township.

“Invasive, non-native phragmites are becoming widespread and are threatening the health of southeast Michigan’s ecosystem,” said McKenzi Waliczek, the LSC CISMA coordinator. “Performing control management along road right-of-ways helps to prevent further dispersal of the reed and restricts it from further damaging our environment.”

Funding for the phragmites control is provided by each of the communities where work will be done and the Macomb County Department of Roads. MCDR views the invasive species as a threat to both drivers and infrastructure, as the reed, which can grow up to 20 feet in height, thrives in roadside ditches and shoulders.

“Road right-of-ways often provide the perfect conditions for phragmites to grow,” said John Crumm, director of planning for the Macomb County Department of Roads. “This is a very important issue for us as the plant’s presence creates a visual impairment for drivers, reduces drainage and damages the actual road itself, as its rhizome (root) system allows it to grow up through the pavement.”

Work to control phragmites in county road right-of-ways began in 2015. The work performed this fall is part of that ongoing effort. It may include, but is not limited to, sections of:

  • Clinton Township: Canal Road, Metro Parkway, Stevenson, Little and Groesbeck
  • Harrison Township: Metro Parkway and Prentiss Street
  • Ray Township: North Avenue, 28 Mile, Teller Road, 27 Mile, Kunstman, Romeo Plank and Coco Court
  • Shelby Township: Hayes Road, Ryan Road and Mound Road
  • Washington Township: Schoenherr Road, Campground Road, 26 Mile, 27 Mile, 28 Mile, 29 Mile, 30 Mile, Old Van Dyke, Mound Road, Dequindre Road and Inwood Road

The LSC CISMA has focused extensively on phragmites control and removal this summer. Several weeks ago, it was announced that a United States Forestry Service grant totaling $37,865 had been awarded to the CISMA’s work group. The federal grant has allowed the Six Rivers Land Conservancy and the CISMA to coordinate a 2019-2021 project that will explore various control methods in three Macomb County areas: (1) the Murdock Ballard Relief Drain in Harrison Township, (2) the Disco Drain near 25 Mile in

Shelby Township and (3) a detention pond close to the Clinton Township Fire Station. To find more information on phragmites, visit the LSC CISMA Facebook page and webpage. A video produced by SEMCOG provides further detail.


About the LSC CISMA: The Lake St. Clair Cooperative Invasive Species Management Area (LSC CISMA) is a partnership of local and state governments, nonprofits, and property owners founded in 2015. United
in their goal to prevent, detect and control priority invasive species, the CISMA operates within the boundary of the vast, 2,100 square mile, Lake St Clair Watershed. The CISMA is funded by the Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program (


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