In November, this website described a proposal made to Columbia Township that would locate a concert venue at Clark Lake. It would be accessed from US 127 and Industrial Drive. Promoter Scott Vitale says the concerts would feature the Country Boots & Bands brand. Operating as Raine Productions, the organization has put on shows in surrounding townships including Summit, Napoleon and Blackman. The one-day music concerts could eventually attract up to 5,000 to the proposed venue, although their current application limits the number to 2,000. Doors would open at 6 pm with performances from 7 pm – 10:30 pm. Parking would accommodate more than 1700 cars.
The idea was introduced publicly at the November meeting of the Columbia Township Board. The proposal is in “action item” for tonight’s board meeting, meaning there could be a vote. Here are several views of the location.
Below is an aerial view, showing 127 and Industrial Drive. The only entrance or exit is through Industrial Drive.
At Industrial Drive, 127 consists of two travel lanes with a center turn lane. Some concerned residents have posed these questions:
- 127 is already a busy artery. With cars in the center turn lane entering from both north and south, how would that affect traffic and is it safe?
Comment from the Columbia Township Police: Should this pass, Chief Jay Niles says “the department will work with MDOT and law enforcement partners to ensure the safety of those traveling on 127, and those exiting and entering the venue. To control traffic flow, the traffic light at 127 and Jefferson can be manually operated, similarly to MIS race days in conjunction with other efforts at that intersection.”
- Industrial Drive is the only way in and out of the venue. What if emergency vehicles need to use it and cars are packed bumper to bumper?
Chief Niles comments “Proper planning will take place to enable emergency vehicles to operate no matter what traffic conditions are.”
Other concerns heard from residents include alcohol consumption and sanitation.
Here is an overhead view of the plans for the venue.
Here are some views of the 127/Industrial Drive intersection.
To read more from the concert promoter, please click here.
The Columbia Township board welcomes comments at the beginning and end of each meeting. Speakers are allowed three minutes each. Board members are not obligated to answer questions during public comment, but sometimes do. The Township board meets tonight at 7 pm.