The History of Pickwick Village

On August 2, 1971 Dominc Moceri, a builder from the Flint area, signed an agreement for Planned Unit Development (PUD) of 100 acres. This agreement defined the development of the area we now know as Pickwick Village Subdivision and Canton Forest Condominiums including zoning, density, watershed, sequence of construction, and other major and minor building restrictions. The area known as Canton Forest Condominiums was to be high density with 212 units attached town houses. This was the first phase of the PUD.

The second phase was the construction of the north half of our current subdivision: north ofHanford, which was to be duplexes. The third phase was from Hanford south to Willow Creek consisting of single unit dwellings (houses). The project was to begin the fall of 1971, but was slowed to the spring of 1972 partly due to a poor economy. Because of this poor economy, Dominc broke from the PUD and decided to commence construction with phase II, but building single unit dwellings. This was more saleable and attractive to persons looking west of the new 1-275. By starting construction of single family homes in phase II, the look of the entire PUD changed. The construction continued, but not as Mr. Moceri had hoped. Around 1977, Dominc chose to sell the northern most section due to Federal Government pressure to build HUD housing (not a profitable venture for Mr. Moceri). The property was sold too “Forest City”, which later became known as “Handy Andy”, who after many years of litigation sold the property to “Karp Development Inc.” in early 1989. The Pickwick Board of Directors was extremely vigilant and active as co-defendants in a ten year plus year lawsuit. Due to this tenacity, there currently are luxury condominiums north of Pickwick instead of HUD housing!

One of the major concerns with any construction in Canton is what to do with the surface water run-off. The water table is high in the township in general. It is considered that north of Ford Road is higher ground and therefore less of a concern. Nonetheless, a heavy rain could cause flooding all across the township. This is the reason for the common areas we now call the north and south parks.

The PUD called for an undeveloped, natural free and under-brush park in both of these areas. These were to be left alone during the development and would become lower ground than the surrounding home sites, therefore using the park as a catch basin for surface water run-off until the single storm sewer in each could gradually drain the water from the park into Willow Creek. It wasn’t until later that Pickwick itself decided to turn these parks into the open play areas as you see them now. This is why the parks remain wet after a rain… to keep your basement from flooding! Because of surface water ordinances in the township, there is very little, if anything, we can change!
Since the mid 70’s the governing of the association has fully converted to the 290 voting single family residences now in the subdivision. Each year, three persons are elected to serve a three-year term on the Board of Directors. This Board of Directors maintains a constant nine-person membership who, among themselves, elects the subdivisions’ officers for a one-year term from the nine people serving on the Board. Through the volunteer efforts of these Board members and other homeowners, the work of the subdivision is accomplished.

All residents are members of the association and can have input through their attendance at the regular monthly board meetings or the annual meeting, which is held each June. Financial records are kept (and audited) and may be found in our website. Details regarding the governance of the association may be viewed in the By Laws section of the website.

Pickwick is more than just a subdivision. It is closely-knit community. It is through the people of Pickwick, who deeply care about and exhibit pride in their neighborhood, that we welcome you to our community.

(Originally published by the Pickwick Village HOA Board – 1998)