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How To/FAQs

Public Service
Which streets are city responsibility and which are Wayne County?
The city is responsible for maintaining all streets within the Allen Park, except for Wayne County roads that run through the city.  The following is a list of Wayne County roads:

  • Allen Road (except downtown Allen Park, between Southfield & Roosevelt/Ecorse; this section of Allen Road is a city road)
  • Outer Drive
  • Oakwood Boulevard
  • Pelham Road
  • Goddard Road
  • Southfield Freeway (MDOT)
  • All other freeways
If you have an issue that you'd like to report on any of the above County roads or their adjacent easements, you may use their online form for reporting by clicking here.  You may also use Wayne County's 24-hour toll free number, 888-762-3273 (888-ROADCREW).
How do I report an issue with a city street?
Common issues that may arise include potholes, sinkholes, curb issues, striping, or broken/damaged traffic signs.  You can report these issues online by clicking here, or by calling DPS during normal business hours at 313-928-0550 x2.  
How often is street sweeping done?
Streets are swept during compost season, from April to the end of November.  We aim to sweep streets every 4-6 weeks, during your trash pickup day.
How do I report a street light outage?
DTE is responsible for all street lights.  The City does not install or maintain street lights.  If you have noticed an outage, please use this form to report directly to DTE.  You may also report the outage by calling DTE at 313-324-8290.
How do I report a downed or sagging overhead wire?
The City does not install or maintain overhead or underground wires.  If you see a downed wire, do not go near it and call DTE at 800-477-4747 or report it directly on their website by clicking here.

The top two highest sets of wires on a pole are DTE/electrical wires, while the set closest to the ground are communication wires.  The city does not know which wires belong to which company.  If a communication wire is in need of maintenance, you should contact one of the communication companies:

  • WOW: 866-496-9669
  • AT&T: 800-288-2020
  • Comcast: 800-934-6489
My property was damaged during a city project.  Who is responsible for repairs?
Before the start of any city construction projects, the entire construction area is videotaped to ensure that properties are returned to their original condition after the project has been fully completed.  The contractor is responsible to restore the property to the condition it was in prior to beginning of construction.  If you have any concerns regarding your property after project completion, please contact DPS at 313-928-0550 x2.  
How are city streets chosen to be repaired or replaced?
Road repairs are evaluated by both city employees and independent third party PASER raters.  The PASER scale is a 1-10 rating system for road pavement condition developed by the University of Wisconsin-Madison Transportation Information Center. PASER uses visual inspection to evaluate pavement surface conditions.  
There are colored flags and/or markings on or near my property.  What does this mean?
Flags or markings are done by the owners of those respective utilities.  The colors of the markings correspond to the utilities being marked:

  • Yellow - Gas
  • Orange - Communications
  • Red - Electric
  • Blue - Water
  • Green - Storm sewer
  • Pink - Surveying
Any entity from contractor to homeowner is required to contact Miss Dig before the beginning of an underground project.  This is a free service provided to flag any underground utilities.  If you see markings, the city does not necessarily have more information regarding that project.  You may contact Miss Dig at 1-800-482-7171 to request utility marking.
Where does the money come from for road repairs?
Money for road construction projects comes from several sources:

  • There is a 1.9015 mill assessment on your winter taxes every year
  • Act 51 is money that the State of Michigan provides to every community and is funded by license plate tabs and gas taxes
  • Large road projects may be funded in part by grants or bonds when necessary
How much does it cost to replace a road?
The cost of replacement depends on the size and scope of a project, the condition, and the type and cost of materials.  The below prices are a rough estimate for the replacement of 1 mile of road (29 feet wide) in the year 2024.  Replacement cost is different depending on materials and scope:

  • The cost to replace 1 mile of concrete road is approximately $3-3.5 million
  • The cost to replace 1 mile of asphalt road is approximately $2.9-3.5 million
Water & Sewer
How often will I receive a water bill?
Water bills are mailed every other month.  Different parts of the city are on different billing cycles.  If you own a commercial building, it is possible that you are receiving monthly bills.  If you are unsure of when you should be getting a bill, please contact water billing at 313-928-3393.
How can I pay my water bill?
There are several ways to pay your water bill:

  • You may visit City Hall during normal business hours and pay at the Treasurer's window.  Acceptable forms of payment include cash, check, and debit/credit card (fee applies)
  • You may pay online using a credit or debit card.  There is an applicable fee to use any sort of plastic payment
  • You may enroll in automatic withdrawals.  We are only able to withdraw from a savings or checking account (no debit or credit cards).  There is no fee for this service.  Withdrawals will be deducted from your account on the bill's due date.  Click here for an automatic payment enrollment form
  • There is a secure blue drop box located in front of city hall and is available for use 24-7.  Please do not leave cash in drop box.  Check or money order only
What if my check bounces or my card payment is rejected?
There is an un-waivable return fee of $30.  If your payment has been returned for any reason, please reach out to Water Billing at 313-928-3393 to update your payment information.
Why is my water bill higher than usual?
There are several reasons you may have a higher than normal water bill.  The simple change of seasons may bring on a higher bill, as you may be watering gardens, using a sprinkler system, or filling pools.  If your bill is extremely high, you may have a leak.  The most common leak is in toilets.  This is because the water will leak from the back tank directly into the toilet bowl, and go unnoticed.  To check if you have a toilet leak, you may put food dye in the tank of the toilet and do not flush - wait overnight, and if there is color in the bowl in the morning, you have a leak.  If you hear your toilet making noise or running, there is a good chance it is leaking.  

You can also take a look at the water meter.  Make sure you are not currently running any water in the house.  Open the top flap on the water meter to view the digital display.  Make a note of the 8 digit number reading; wait 10-15 minutes without using any water, and re-check the meter display.  If your reading has changed, you have a leak.  If you have any further questions, please contact the water billing clerk at 313-928-3393.
I am unable to pay my water bill.  Is there any assistance available?
You may qualify for assistance through Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency with their WRAP program.  Click here for more information regarding WRAP.
What happens to unpaid water bills?
Unpaid water bills are transferred to your Summer taxes every year.  Depending on the billing cycle, your bill will transfer in either April or May.  Unpaid bills that transfer to taxes will be charged an additional 30% penalty, plus $25.00 administrative fee.  If you are concerned about your water bill transferring to your taxes, please contact the Water Billing Department at 313-928-3393.
I just moved in.  How do I get the water bill put into my name?
If you have purchased a property and you are the new homeowner, the water bill will be put into your name when you file your property transfer affidavit with the Assessor's office.  

If you are a renter, only your landlord may request a name change for water bills.
I need my water shut off or turned on for maintenance.  How can I schedule this?
Please contact the Water Billing Department at 313-928-3393 to schedule for a water shut off or to be turned back on.  It is a $20 fee added to the next water bill to turn on or off if done in the same day.  If two appointments are required on separate days, it is a $20 charge each day.  After hours or weekend shutoffs are $90.

Please note: if you are a new homeowner or renter, there is no charge to turn water on.  Generally, water is not shut off when a previous owner vacates.  There is no need to have water turned on.
I'm moving out.  What do I need to do for water billing purposes?
If you are selling your home or otherwise moving out, you will need to order a final water bill through the Water Billing Department.  The fee for a final water bill is $20 and is added to the final water bill.  Final bills will have a water usage reading through the date that you request.  If a sale is involved, please provide the email address of a title company so that we may forward the final bill.  
I have an emergency water issue after hours.  Who do I contact?
Outside of normal business hours, which is Monday through Friday, 8am to 4pm, you may contact The Police Department at 313-386-7800 in the event of an emergency.  An emergency may include a water main break, basement backup, a burst pipe, or any other type of emergency that cannot wait.
Why is my water discolored?
Discolored water results when water traveling through the water mains reaches high enough velocities to stir the sediment lying in the bottom of the water mains. Water main breaks, firefighting activities, annual flushing of fire hydrants and extremely high system demand are typical causes of discolored water. There are no health risks associated with this type of problem, as the particulate matter causing the discoloration is not harmful. If you experience this problem, the easiest way to eliminate the discolored water from your system is to run the cold water in your laundry tub (or any faucet that does not have an aerator attached to it).  This will create a high enough flow rate from the water main to your home to clear out any sediment which may have found its way into your service line. If the problem does not clear up within a few minutes, it is possible that the sediment in the water main has not settled out yet. In this case, wait an hour or so and try it again.
Why don't I have water?
There could be several reasons that you are experiencing a lapse in water service:

  • It is possible that a valve in your house may have accidentally been turned off - check to make sure all valves are open
  • Main breaks - whenever there is a main break in your area, we make every effort to notify the affected residents by going door to door.  Repair times can vary
  • Main replacements - our commitment to updating city infrastructure often includes the replacement of old and/or outdated water mains.  If the main in your area is to be replaced, you will be notified via flyer by the contractor several days in advance so that you may properly prepare for any interruption in service
Waste Collection
When is my pickup day?
Rubbish shall not be placed on the street earlier than 5:00 pm of the night before regular pickup day. Empty receptacles shall be removed from the streets no later than 7:00 pm the day of the pickup.  It is against city ordinance to park in the street on your pickup day between the hours of 7am-5pm.  GFL working hours are 7am-7pm.  Trash, recycling, and compost will all be picked up on the same day.  See the map below for your pickup day.
Rubbish-and-Compost-2021-Map - Copy
What holidays will cause a delay in pickup?
Page-4-from-paint-(1) - Copy
My trash or recycling was missed.  How do I report this?
Occasionally, there are missed pickups for a number of reasons.  If you have a missed pickup, you can report it to DPS at 313-928-0550 x2, or you may use GFL's online form located here.  GFL's working hours are between 7am and 7pm.  Please do not report a missed pickup if it is still within business hours.
My bin was damaged or has gone missing.  How do I get it replaced?
You may call DPS at 313-928-0550 x2 during normal business hours to report a damaged or missing bin.  We will exchange or replace the bin for you.  There is no charge for an even exchange or replacement of a missing bin.
How do I get a second trash or recycling bin?
The City of Allen Park provides one trash bin and one recycling bin for no charge to each residence.  You may purchase additional bins from GFL directly if necessary.  Trash bins are $75.00, and recycling bins are $65.00.  You may contact GFL to purchase additional bins at 844-464-3587.
I have bulk items to throw out.  Do I need to schedule a special pickup?
Bulk items would be considered anything you are not able to place in a refuse container.  GFL will pick up bulk items equal to the size of two kitchen stoves or less without any prior notice.  GFL will also pick up single large items without the need for an additional phone call, such as a couch or loveseat, a chair, a stove, a mattress or box spring, or any similar sized items.  Carpeting must be bundled in lengths of 4 feet or less, and no item should exceed 120 pounds.  GFL does not allow construction materials.  If you have bulk items that fall outside of GFL's guidelines, please contact GFL at 844-464-3587 to arrange for a special pickup.
What are the guidelines for compost collection?
Compost pickup is every week on your scheduled day of service starting in the first full week of April through the second week of December.

  • Leaves, grass clippings, and yard waste must be in cans or in paper compost bags
  • Brush must be bundled no larger than eighteen inches in diameter and four feet long
  • One individual item cannot be more than three inches in diameter
  • 50 pound maximum weight on cans and bags
WARNING - Raking of Leaves into the street is against the city ordinance. You could be ticketed and fined.
I have a large amount of yard waste to dispose of.  How do I do this?
You may break down what yard waste you have according to the compost collection guidelines and set it out for your normal pickup.  If your items fall outside of these guidelines, or it is a large amount of yard waste, you may contact DPS at 313-928-0550 x2 to request a brush estimate.  The city will pick up yard waste and brush for a minimum fee of $80.00, which can be higher depending on the amount of brush you have.  All items must be at the curb for an estimate to be given.  The estimate will be left in your mailbox and items will not be picked up until estimate is paid at city hall.  

If you would like to dispose of the items yourself, you may contact the Riverview Land Preserve at 734-281-4263 to inquire about acceptable items, hours of operation, and cost.
How do I dispose of construction waste/building materials?
GFL does not pick up construction waste.  The City will pick up construction waste if it is at the curb for a minimum pickup fee of $80.00.  The cost will depend on the amount and type of materials being disposed.  
How do I dispose of hazardous waste?
GFL cannot accept any hazardous chemicals that are considered flammable, corrosive, poisonous, radioactive, or otherwise dangerous.

Wayne County holds four hazardous waste disposal events each year.  There is no charge to dispose your hazardous waste at these events.  See below for information regarding these events:

Belleville HHW event 
- 4/6/2024 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Please click here to view the event flyer.
Dearborn HHW event - 6/29/2024 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Please click here to view the event flyer.
Westland HHW event - 8/31/2024 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Please click here to view the event flyer.
Taylor HHW event - 10/19/2024 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Please click here to view the event flyer.

Items that are accepted include:

  • Household paints, stains, dyes
  • Floor care items, furniture polish, bathroom cleaners
  • Lawn and garden chemicals, pesticides, fertilizers
  • Antifreeze, motor oil, gasoline
  • Automotive batteries, dry cell batteries, propane tanks
  • Old computers, printers, scanners, TV's, cell phones, fax machines
  • Mercury containing thermometers, thermostats and elemental mercury
  • Fluorescent light bulbs (standard and compact)
  • Smoke detectors, fire extinguishers
  • Pharmaceutical Waste (Non -controlled Substances only)
  • CRT televisions and monitors

Items that are not accepted include:

  • Commercial waste, industrial waste
  • Ammunition, explosives
  • 55-gallon drums
  • Radioactive materials
  • Unknown, unlabeled waste
  • Shock sensitive materials
  • Household trash
  • Appliances
In addition, there are other resources available for you to manage your waste materials:

  • You can download our "Wayne County Recycles" app from Google Play or the App store. It provides options for safe disposal on a wide variety of household hazardous waste and electronic waste items.
  • An online version of our application can be found on our website here. At the bottom of the page you will see the "Resource Recovery Guide" where you can type in the name of an item and receive safe disposal options.
  • Obtain a free recycling voucher available to Wayne County residents. See the section above for details on this new and innovative program for recycling household hazardous waste.
  • Our processing contractor, Environmental Recycling Group in Livonia, accepts residential drop off of HHW by appointment for a fee. You can call them at 734-437-9650.
I have a city tree in my easement that I don't want anymore.  How can I get it removed?
The city does not remove healthy trees.  If you believe that your tree is dead, diseased, dying, please contact DPS at 313-928-0550 x2 to request that we evaluate the health of your tree.  If we determine that your tree needs to be removed, you will be given paperwork to sign and return.  
I have a tree in my easement that I would like removed, but the city says it is healthy and will not remove it.  Can I hire a tree contractor to remove it?
Before removing a tree in any city easement, you must obtain written permission from the city.  This form is available online or at our DPS office.  You may request permission, but a removal is not approved until signed off by a city official.  You do not need to request permission to remove a tree that is on your private property.
I have a city tree in my easement that needs to be trimmed.  How do I get on the list?
If you have a hazardous, dangerous, cracked, or dangling branch on your city tree, please contact DPS at 313-928-0550 x2 to request service.  Branches that are cracked or otherwise hazardous may be subject to removal.  Branches that are hanging low enough to interfere with traffic in the street or on sidewalks may also take priority.  Branches that are touching a structure (i.e. the roof of your home) can also be trimmed back.  The city has contracted TNT Tree Service in 2024 to raise the canopies of trees and low hanging branches.  The city does not "shape" trees that are not causing any issues.
I have a city tree in my easement that I would like to trim.  Can I trim it myself?
Yes!  If you are willing and able to trim your city tree, it is a huge help to the city and your community.  Regularly trimming low hanging branches over the street and sidewalk allows for cars and pedestrians to easily and safely navigate the neighborhood.  You may dispose of a small amount of trimmed branches with your regular compost pickup, or you may call the city to schedule a curbside brush pickup.  Please note, there is a charge for any brush the city picks up that did not come from a city tree.
I'd like to plant a tree in the city easement.  What is the process?
Before planting a tree in any city easement, you must pull a permit and have it approved by a city official.  You may only plant a species of tree from a pre-approved list that can be found by clicking here.  The tree must be the appropriate size for your easement.  The city does not provide trees to residents for planting, nor does the city provide financial assistance for the purchasing of trees.  If you plant a tree without having a prior approved permit, your tree may be subject to removal by the city.  There are no restrictions on planting a tree on your private property.
I have a personal tree on my property that is potentially interfering with power lines.  Who do I contact about this?
DTE handles tree maintenance when trees interfere or potentially interfere with power lines.  You may read more about this on DTE's website, or contact DTE at 877-477-4747.
A large branch fell from my city tree, what do I do with it?
Please call DPS at 313-928-0550 x2 during normal business hours to report a fallen branch.  If the branch has fallen after hours and it is blocking the street or sidewalk, contact the Police Department at 313-928-7800.
My neighbor has a tree in their backyard that is causing me problems.  What can I do?
The city does not get involved in neighbor disputes regarding non-city property.  Please contact Ordinance if you have a complaint about a neighbor's tree.
A tree on my property is causing issues with the sidewalk in front of my house.  Whose responsibility is this?
Sidewalks are a homeowner's responsibility to maintain safely.  We do not remove a healthy tree if it is causing sidewalk issues.  Sidewalk squares may be removed and replaced to correct issues caused by trees without removing the tree.  A permit must be pulled by yourself or a contractor to replace any sidewalk.