Landfill Expansion

Frequently Asked Questions

Landfill Home Page

Frequently Asked Questions

Project Questions

Q. Why does the City want to make the landfill bigger?
A. The revenue from the Riverview Land Preserve (RLP) allows the city to provide services such as fire, police, and libraries, while keeping the tax rate relatively low.  It means residents don’t have to pay for trash pickup, disposal or recycling. By expanding the landfill, the city will also benefit from improvements to Riverview Highlands golf course, where a modern facility will attract golfers while floodplain improvements reduce flooding experienced by our residents.

Q. When will this project start and how long will it take?

A. The design and permitting process will begin immediately.  Once the city council approves a conceptual plan weexpect it will take 18-24 months to create all the plans and secure all of the necessary local, state and federal permits.  The work will begin with the golf course and rerouting the county drains.  A significant part of this work will involve landscaping to make a high-quality golf course and screen the landfill from its neighbors.  We currently anticipate that the golf course renovations will take two construction seasons with a portion of the golf course reduced so that only 18 holes are available at one time. The landfill construction will be phased and will take place over 8 to 10 years.

Q. If this is approved, does this mean hazardous or toxic waste will be coming into my neighborhood?

A. No, the landfill cannot and will not take in toxic or hazardous waste. We are permitted only for municipal solid waste (household trash) and industrial waste (demolition debris, impacted soils, etc.). We have waste review procedures to ensure that only approved, non-hazardous waste comes through our gates.

Q. Will this increase truck traffic/general traffic in my neighborhood?

A.   No, the traffic patterns in and out of the landfill will remain the same. We will keep the entrance and scales in the current location, off King Road at Grange Road.

Q. What will happen to the golf course?

AThe golf course will be redesigned and reconstructed to more modern standards.  The new design will have a different layout, but will still have 18 holes of play on the south side of Sibley Road.  The new layout will blend with the realigned Frank and Poet Drain, and will provide additional floodplain storage.

Q. What will happen to the Frank & Poet Drain?

AThe Frank & Poet Drain will be reconfigured as a meandering stream, providing new wildlife habitat, better drainage, and more floodplain storage.  The Drain will be a feature along the golf course and will provide a visual barrier to the landfill.

What are people going to see in surrounding neighborhoods?

ADuring construction, the residents will see (and hear!) construction vehicles. We expect the construction to start on the east part of the golf course, closest to The Forest, for the first nine holes’ renovation.  Then as construction progresses to the west, the sights and sounds of construction will diminish, and the view will be of the relandscaped new golf course greens and fairways.

 Q. Will this decrease the value of my property?

AWe anticipate the renovation of the golf course to enhance property values. This project will also keep Riverview attractive to homebuyers because of the lower tax base, due to the continuing landfill revenue.

Q. How noisy will this be?

A. Construction is necessarily noisy.  However, we will make sure to keep construction traffic limited to “normal” hours to minimize the noise impact to our residents.

 Q. Is it going to smell bad?

 A. No! The landfill is required to control odors, and they have been doing a great job.  The landfill not only employs good waste handling procedures and landfill gas collection systems, they implement other odor controls like deodorizers and not taking really smelly loads like sewage sludges.

 Q. Will this cost me any money?

 ANo, the landfill is going to foot the bill for most of the work.  The enterprise funds have been set aside and are available for this purpose. The golf course will contribute from their revenues as well.  The money for this project is not coming out of the general funds.

 General Landfill Questions

 Q. What type of waste is accepted at the Riverview Land Preserve and where does it come from?

 A. The RLP is permitted by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) as a Type II municipal solid waste landfill.  A type II landfill is allowed to accept household trash as well as non- hazardous waste produced by local businesses. The landfill currently accepts household waste from communities throughout southern Wayne County as well as potions of other counties in Southeastern Michigan.  Most of the waste currently coming into the landfill is either regular trash or construction and demolition debris.  There are limited amounts of waste which is considered special waste which comes from cleanups of nonhazardous sites such as gas stations and the cleaning of industrial facilities.

 Q. Who regulates the Riverview Land Preserve?

 A. The RLP is regulated by three different offices of the MDEQ as well as the Wayne County Department of Public Services and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA). The main permits for the landfill are issued by the MDEQ’s Office of Waste Management and Radiological Protection, Air Quality Division and Water Resources Division.  All of the landfill’s permits and licenses are available on the City’s website.

 Q. What is landfill gas?  Is it harmful?

A. Landfill gas is naturally generated by decomposition of organic material in the landfill.  It is composed of about 50% percent methane (natural gas) and 50% carbon dioxide and water vapor.  Landfill gas, under typical circumstances, is not harmful unless you are in an enclosed area with it.  It can have odors when not properly controlled and it can cause temporary effects like a headache to individuals directly exposed but is not known to have long-term health impacts to residents around a facility.

 Q. How is landfill gas generated?

 A. Landfill gas is generated during the natural process of bacterial decomposition of the organic material contained in municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills. It is influenced by many different factors including the type and age of waste buried in the landfill, the quantity and type of organic compounds in the waste and the moisture content and temperature of the waste.

 Q.  What is being done to protect public health, safety, and the environment?

 A. The RLP meets or exceeds all state and federal regulations.  This means that the soil and groundwater are protected by the bottom liner system which collects liquid from the waste, where it is removed and disposed.  Air quality is protected by use of the landfill gas collection system, and operational practices to minimize dust and odors. All operations and management staff are certified and trained. The RLP conducts daily, weekly and monthly inspections of all the control systems, and is inspected regularly by regulatory agencies as well.   The landfill has monthly, quarterly, and annual reports to demonstrate that the operation complies regulatory requirements for environmental protection.

 Q. Will there be a discharge of liquid waste? If so, where will it go?

 A. As waste decomposes, it generates a liquid waste material called leachate. The landfill has an impermeable liner system to collect the liquid, where it is then pumped to either a sewer discharge (under permitted discharge only) or it can be pumped into a truck for transport to a disposal facility.

 Q. What is being done to minimize odor, noise, litter and dust?

 A. The RLP strives to be a good neighbor.  The RLP has an operations plan to address all these concerns, and are required to implement controls accordingly. Odors are controlled by the landfill gas collection system, daily cover over the trash, and additional measures like deodorizers and limits on waste acceptance.  Noise is limited by working hours (typically daytime hours starting at daybreak). Litter controls include fencing and cleanup crews. The crews are on patrol five days a week and are dispatched wherever they are needed. Dust control is performed daily; the truck routes are routinely sprayed with water to keep the dust under control.  If any of these items is an issue during this project, the RLP will adjust operations to resolve the problem.

 Q. Who do I call if the landfill smells?

 A. If you are troubled by landfill odors, please contact the Riverview Land Preserve at 734-785-7358 and Wayne County Department of Public Services at.

 Q. Who maintains and regulates the landfill?

AThe City operates the landfill and performs maintenance, compliance, and reporting activities. Regulation is under the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), and Wayne County Department of Public Services (WCDPS). Both of these agencies are authorized by the US Environmental Protection Agency.


Q. Where can I find more information?

A. This website provides contact information more for Riverview Landfill Preserve

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