White Pine Trail to Reopen on May 22

Wolverine is pleased to announce that the portion of the White Pine Trail running through its former tannery site in Rockford will reopen tomorrow, May 22, around 12:00 p.m.

Over the past week we removed crushed stone haul roads, installed additional erosion controls, and performed final grading and hydroseeding. This site restoration work is described here, and followed the excavation work described in more detail here. For current photos of the site, please see the end of this blog post.

We anticipate needing to close and re-route the White Pine Trail two more times this year for short periods. This first will be in early June, to supplement the seeding along the riverbank with cuttings and plugs of similar native grasses and wildflowers. The second will be this fall, to plant trees along the riverbank and trail. For complete details on the grasses, wildflowers, shrubs, and trees being planted on the site, please click here for the approved plans, the key sections of which are also at the bottom of this blog post.

We are committed to keeping the community informed through regular updates on this blog, www.WeAreWolverine.com, and through information posted at kiosks and in other locations accessible to the public. As always, residents with questions are encouraged to contact Wolverine directly at HouseStreet@wwwinc.com or (616) 866-5627.

 

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Tannery Restoration North Side

Tannery Restoration North Side

 

Tannery Restoration South Side

Tannery Restoration South Side

Update on Restoration Work at Former Tannery; White Pine Trail to Reopen

Earlier this year, Wolverine completed excavation work at its former Tannery site in Rockford, and over the last several weeks we have been performing site restoration work. This has included placing and grading clean topsoil, re-seeding the banks of the Rogue River with native grasses and flowers, installing erosion control devices, and repaving the White Pine Trail (see pictures below). These activities are part of the remediation agreed upon by Wolverine and the EPA, and needed to protect Rogue River water quality and prevent possible shoreline erosion.

Wolverine is pleased to announce that this restoration work is nearing completion, and we anticipate reopening the White Pine Trail through the site by Friday, May 22. Between now and then, we will be completing additional erosion controls, performing final grading, and hydroseeding the area west of the trail. We will also be removing the crushed stone that was brought onto the site last year to construct access roads for the excavation work. This stone will be transported by truck to Wolverine’s House Street property over the next few days, where it will be staged for use in future construction projects like Plainfield Township’s municipal water extension.

We anticipate needing to close and re-route the White Pine Trail two more times this year for short periods. This first will be in late May or early June, when we anticipate supplementing the seeding along the riverbank with cuttings and plugs of similar native species. The second will be this fall, when we will be planting trees along the riverbank and trail.

We are committed to limiting the impact of these restoration activities on neighboring residents, surrounding businesses, and the community as a whole, and will continue to keep the community informed through regular updates on this blog, www.WeAreWolverine.com, and through information posted at kiosks and in other locations accessible to the public.

As always, residents with questions are encouraged to contact Wolverine directly at HouseStreet@wwwinc.com or (616) 866-5627.

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WOLVERINE TO CONDUCT LIMITED RESTORATION WORK AT FORMER TANNERY

Last month, Wolverine completed the excavation work it began last fall at the site of its former Tannery in Rockford.  As described here, this work included the removal of several areas of sediments, soils, leather scraps, and hides from the Tannery site, the adjacent White Pine Trail, and the banks of the Rogue River.  We ended up excavating approximately 23,000 tons of material (around 11,600 cubic yards) from the site, sending 835 truckloads to an approved off-site landfill.

Beginning the week of April 20, Wolverine’s EPA-approved environmental contractor will return to perform necessary site restoration work under EPA oversight.  This includes placing clean topsoil, grading the site to promote proper drainage, seeding the site and the banks of the Rogue River with native grasses, installing erosion control devices, and repaving the White Pine Trail.  These activities are part of the remediation agreed upon by Wolverine and the EPA, and are needed to protect Rogue River water quality and prevent possible shoreline erosion.

This work is expected to take three to four weeks, and the White Pine Trail will be closed and re-routed for a portion of this time.  While this work is taking place, all workers will use appropriate safety protocols to address COVID-19 risk and comply with Governor Whitmer’s executive order, which authorizes environmental response work like this to proceed with these safeguards in place.

Sometime later this year, we anticipate supplementing the seeding taking place over the next three to four weeks with cuttings and plugs of similar native species.  The mix type will include grasses such as little bluestem and flowering species such as New England aster and black-eyed Susan, along with a variety of trees.  The deep root systems of these types of native plants have the ability to provide protection from erosion and can reduce water run-off.  In addition, native plants do not require the use of fertilizers and provide habitat and food for wildlife.

We are committed to limiting the impact of these restoration activities on neighboring residents, surrounding businesses, and the community as a whole, and will continue to keep the community informed through regular updates on this blog, www.WeAreWolverine.com, and through information posted at kiosks and in other locations accessible to the public.

As always, residents with questions are encouraged to contact Wolverine directly at HouseStreet@wwwinc.com or (616) 866-5627.

Cleanup Work at Former Tannery Completed; White Pine Trail to Reopen This Weekend

We are pleased to announce that Wolverine has completed the cleanup work it began last fall at the site of its former Tannery in Rockford.  The White Pine Trail, which runs through the site and was re-routed during the work, will reopen on Friday, March 6.  Please note this section of the trail is currently made of crushed limestone, and will be paved during the upcoming construction season.

Wolverine operated the tannery from the early 1890s until it closed in 2009.  The tannery was then decommissioned and demolished, and Wolverine conducted environmental testing with EPA and MDEQ oversight.  We completed additional testing in 2017 and 2018, setting the stage for the cleanup work we started in September 2019.

This work is described in more detail in blog posts here and here, and included the excavation and disposal of several areas of sediments, soils, leather scraps, and hides from the Tannery site, the adjacent White Pine Trail, and the banks of the Rogue River, as shown on this map.  We ended up excavating approximately 23,000 tons of material (around 11,600 cubic yards) from the site, sending 835 truckloads to an approved off-site landfill.

Several recent pictures of the site are included below.  Over the coming months we will be conducting site restoration activities.  This includes removing equipment and replacing grass, trees, and other vegetation removed during the cleanup work.  It also includes adjusting the fencelines and temporarily closing the White Pine Trail again for paving.

We are committed to limiting the impact of these restoration activities on neighboring residents, surrounding businesses, and the community as a whole, and will continue to keep the community informed through regular updates on this blog, www.WeAreWolverine.com, and through information posted at kiosks and in other locations accessible to the public.

As always, residents with questions are encouraged to contact Wolverine directly at HouseStreet@wwwinc.com or (616) 866-5627.

View of White Pine Trail and riverbank looking north
View of White Pine Trail looking north
View of White Pine Trail looking south
View of White Pine Trail looking south
View of riverbank
View of riverbank