Lake Michigan levels, erosion are “very big concern” for some residents in Mount Pleasant

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MOUNT PLEASANT -- Officials in the Village of Mount Pleasant are calling it an emergency situation. Lake Michigan levels are so high right now that the water is eroding the bluff. Now as many as a dozen homes are at risk of falling into the lake.

Tony Van Vutten has lived in Mount Pleasant for the past 30 years.

Erosion of Mount Pleasant bluffs

Erosion of Mount Pleasant bluffs

"In April, I came back home -- the whole dang thing was gone," Van Vutten said.

Van Vutten lost 15 feet of his yard as it tumbled into Lake Michigan. High waves, especially bad this year, have eroded the bluff. Now Van Vutten and his neighbors' homes are at risk.

Erosion of Mount Pleasant bluffs

Erosion of Mount Pleasant bluffs

The Mount Pleasant Village President says sewers, electricity, fire hydrants and streets are also in danger of crumbling into the lake. One house was recently knocked down as it was falling. Where it once stood, now there is nothing.

Homeowners say the rapid erosion situation has been threatening them in earnest since January -- as Lake Michigan is at its highest level in the past 90 years. Now, houses that have been there for decades could just disappear.

Erosion of Mount Pleasant bluffs

Erosion of Mount Pleasant bluffs

"This is a very big concern. I do not want to see that happen. So I can't stress the emergency that we have here," said Jerry Garski, Mount Pleasant Village President.

Another meeting is set for Wednesday, May 18th. Residents are hopeful the federal government will help with placing boulders and building a breakwater system to protect the Mount Pleasant shoreline.

Erosion of Mount Pleasant bluffs

Erosion of Mount Pleasant bluffs

4 comments

  • DOUGLAS

    I’ve seen the same thing here in Canada. When lake levels are low people build close to the waters edge, then think the Govt should pay for the repairs and a break water because of their stupidity. Just because the water levels are low for a decade or two doesn’t mean that the water levels will stay low.

  • A YOOPER

    We as humans are nothing more than a tiny dot on the timeline of earth. The earth will change as it wants. If you choose to build that close to the waterfront be prepared to pay up for it. No sympathy here and I sure hope no tax $$ to try to stop what can’t be stopped.

  • NorellWE

    It is caused by Post Glacial rebound. Natgo has a story on this subject, the last 10 mins of Drain the Great Lakes. The North side of Lake Superior is is rebounding from the Ice Age at 1/2 to 1″ a year.

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