Patel’s initial plans call for an $18 million investment in a senior living facility called Pinnacle Point of Tupelo, and could eventually reach up to $50 million with the addition of retail stores and restaurants. The development site covers about 28 acres and stretches from the west side of North Gloster Street toward Legion Lake.

After an April investigation of the site, MDEQ sent Patel a Notice of Violations in early May. He was given 10 days to respond, and following that response, MDEQ followed up with another visit on June 6.

That visit was to ensure stormwater pollution prevention plans (SWPPP) were in place and that no other construction had taken place.

Investigators noted that even though Patel had submitted a SWPPP to the MDEQ Permits Division on May 2, it had not received approval, and a Notice of Deficiency had been sent to him on May 21.

Also during the June visit, MDEQ found that the wetland area didn’t have full silt fencing perimeter and the silt fencing on the western boundary of the property was not buried properly and “was impaired in several places.”

“The site appeared to be mostly stabilized by grassing, but there were some minimal concerns about erosion and sediment getting off site,” MDEQ said.

The agency asked Patel to correct deficiencies by June 30 and said it would visit the site “within the coming weeks.”

It requested that Patel:

  • Address the SWPPP deficiencies noted in its Notice of Deficiency from May 21, and fully implement the SWPPP
  • Establish silt fencing around the entire perimeter of the wetland area
  • Repair and/or properly install silt fencing throughout the entire project, paying particular attention to the western boundary
  • Establish vegetative cover in the bare areas to minimize erosion.

MDEQ also said it had received Patel’s response to the May Notice of Violations that he had begun construction without the appropriate coverage under the MDEQ’s Large Construction Storm Water General Permit.

After reviewing the response, followed by the site visit on June 6, MDEQ said it would put the Pinnacle Point project on a 90-day Informal Compliance Schedule, which expires Sept. 11. During that 90 days, MDEQ said it will continue to monitor the project.

“Any additional violations identified may result in formal enforcement action, which could include monetary penalties for each violation that has occurred at this site,” the agency said.

— Dennis Seid