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Dow Chemical announces $400 million investment, voluntary property buyouts in Midland

Waldo Ave

Dow chemical announces a big investment in its Midland operations.

Now the City of Midland will decide on the fate of Dow Chemical’s plans.

Dow chemical on Thursday promised a $400 million dollar investment to transform their Midland operations and an additional $100 hundred million for an innovation center.

After 24 community meetings where they looked for public feedback, Dow Chemical says they're moving forward with consolidation plans.

"They have tried to solicit comments back from the community in terms of what issues should be addressed, and at this point in time they have submitted the petition for the city to undertake that process and move it forward,” said Brad Kaye, Midland's Assistant City Manager for Development Services.

Dow wants to unify their facilities and doing so would require them to close South Saginaw Road between Mark Putnam Road and Salzburg Road.

"They are merging those operations and the two facilities within the City of Midland are separated of course by South Saginaw road, and so the operations of the chemical plant right now are split by the public road," explained Kaye.

If South Saginaw Road is closed, traffic will likely funnel to Waldo Ave.

Potential for increased traffic there concerns residents who say it could mean 600 more cars per day on Waldo Ave.

Dow will offer voluntary buyouts to 20 property owners on Waldo Ave.

The proposal will soon be evaluated by Midland city planners.

"Does the road serve enough public purpose that it should not be allowed? And are there other extraneous issues such as where does the traffic go, what are the impacts on the rest of the road systems, safety impacts and so forth, all of which are rolled into our considerations as we go through this request process,” said Kaye.

Dow says it will fund the cost of road reconstruction on Waldo Ave to accommodate additional traffic.

Now it's up to the city to decide if Dow's plans will happen.

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