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April 22, 2019 12:11 pm

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Local Wine-Making Entrepreneur Gets Support From Township Officials

Despite the frigid temperature and biting wind outside, the Saugatuck Township Board held it’s regularly scheduled monthly Wednesday meeting and with a variety of topics on the agenda.

The board unanimously gave its backing to a new local wine-making entrepreneur, Joseph Krajkiewcz, by means of a resolution recommending a small wine license for Krajkiewcz to be sent to the Michigan Liquor Control Commission.

Krajkiewcz’s site plan was given the green light by the Saugatuck Township Planning Commission back in February of last year.

“Our goal is to begin construction this spring,” Krajkiewcz told the board and public on Wednesday.

The license is a first tier license, which would allow Krajkiewcz to manufacture wine and sell it on site.

He and his wife Erica have planted three acres of vineyards this past year, constructed a driveway and built a well at the vineyard and small winery site located at 6781 124th Avenue, just north of M-89 and east of Blue Star Highway on the south end of Saugatuck Township.

“It (the planing and construction) took more hours than I thought it would take,” he said.

In other Saugatuck Township business, officials reported they are working on an engineering plan with “very viable options” for the Lakeshore Drive washout.

“It’s not quite ready. There is something in the works with potentially very positive outcomes,” said Saugatuck Township Manager Aaron Sheridan without providing any details.

He said the plan should be ready for township board review by next month.

At a special public hearing in September, only two persons out of a standing-room-only crowd raised their hand to show their support for complete reconstruction and opening of the washout section of Lakeshore Drive.

From public comments at that hearing, it was apparent that most residents of that neighborhood strongly support some kind of maintenance of the road so as to provide emergency service access as well as a public pathway for pedestrians and cyclists.

Instead of getting to residents on the south side of the washout on what would be a direct route, emergency vehicles, such as fire trucks, now have to make a big deviation by looping around using I-196 to get to injured parties.

Lakeshore Drive runs along the Lake Michigan shoreline and is considered a primary road under the jurisdiction and responsibility of Allegan County.

However, the portion of the 66-foot right-of-way road that has collapsed affects about five township waterfront property lots. Any kind of reconstruction or fix to the problem would necessarily mean a collaborative effort between the township and the Allegan County Road Commission, according to officials.

Sheridan noted that it would be a “township-funded comprehensive plan.”

Local Wine-Making Entrepreneur Gets Support From Township Officials

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