It seems like it's been there longer than it has, although I remember it being there in the mid-90s—it wasn't. The clock tower on Marsh between Central Park and Times Square Drives in Okemos, Michigan, feels like part of the area. I always assumed it was part of the Meridian Mall, which was built around the same time the mall opened in November 1969. I was only off by 24 years.

Related: Michigan's Gordie Howe Bridge: Expected Opening and 9 Cool Facts

The clock is located at 5151 Marsh Road, part of the Merdian Township office campus, which is also home to the Meridian Historical Village (definitely worth a visit).

Google Maps / Scott Clow / Canva
Google Maps / Scott Clow / Canva

So, when and why was this monument to time built, and what secret lies within the Meridian Township clock tower?

The Meridian Township Clock Tower is More Than a Time Piece

The Meridian Township Clock Tower, as seen from the parking lot of the Meridian Township Offices.
Scott Clow

The clock tower stands 188 feet tall and dwarfs surrounding structures. Why was this structure erected in 2003? Was it a geographic lack of timepieces? Telling the time of day had nothing to do with why the clock was built. You see, this tower has a secret.

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A legion of cables runs to the top of the three support beams that make up the Merdian Township clock tower. This cleverly disguised technology provides you with a service you likely use daily without knowing it.

Did You Know This Michigan Clocktower Has a Hidden Purpose?
Scott Clow

According to, DMD Towers of Lansing installed the Merdian Township cellular tower and, somewhat cleverly, disguised it as a clock tower at the behest of residents. This was done to integrate and camouflage better the structure's primary purpose. That hasn't kept the township from having some fun with the tower, though:

Related: Michigan, Before the Internet: 4 Ways Kids Stayed Busy at Meijer

The tower can hold up to eight cell carriers, with two slots reserved for the township's cellular needs. I must give the developers, the township, and the community credit. They turned what could have been an eyesore into what may become a landmark.

Clock Restaurant

Vintage Okemos

Old Michigan Pizza Joints

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