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 Trail users go horseback riding at Kensington Metropark, which features 4,481 sprawling acres of wooded, hilly terrain surrounding  Kent Lake.

Trail users go horseback riding at Kensington Metropark, which features 4,481 sprawling acres of wooded, hilly terrain surrounding Kent Lake.

Photo provided by the Huron-Clinton Metropolitan Authority


Huron-Clinton Metroparks seek input on changes to community recreation plan

By: Mary Beth Almond | C&G Newspapers | Published December 30, 2019

METRO DETROIT — The Huron-Clinton Metropolitan Authority is asking the public to weigh in on proposed amendments to its community recreation plan.

The authority will hold a public hearing on the proposed amendments as part of the Metroparks board meeting at its administrative office, 13000 High Ridge Drive in Brighton, on Thursday, Jan. 9. The purpose of the public hearing is to receive input and comments on the proposed amendments, according to officials.

“As a public park system serving the residents of southeastern Michigan, we consistently seek public input to ensure we are meeting the recreation needs of our region and acting as excellent stewards of the natural resources entrusted to our care. It’s part of making sure that our values as an organization are aligned with the region,” Metroparks Director Amy McMillan said in a statement.

Nina Kelly, the chief of planning and development for the Metroparks, said the community recreation plan was adopted back in the fall of 2017 and covers 2018 through 2022.

“In order to be eligible for grants through the state, we are required to update this every five years … and because we have had a lot of changes since the time that the 2017 plan was completed, we decided that it would make the most sense to go for an amendment of the plan,” she said. “If we are able to integrate our newly identified projects and all of the plans that we’ve worked on over the last couple of years into the recreation plan, that will make us eligible for seeking funding for those projects.”

When the original plan was adopted, Kelly said, the Metropark authority was in the middle of working on all of the individual park master plans, which were adopted in 2018.

“They are all completed now and available on our website,” she said. “And we have also completed our (American with Disabilities Act) transition plan update and a sustainability plan, which were referenced when putting together the revisions for the amended recreation plan, because we have done a lot of work since that time and we wanted (these) recreation plan amendments to reflect that.”

Proposed amendments to the current recreation plan include the addition of a recreational programming plan, which Kelly said provides a detailed account of how the authority does programing.

“It’s very much forward-focusing on the processes for developing and evaluating programs. What we will do, going forward, is every year we will be putting together a work plan, specifically which programs we are going to be working on for that year, and that’s incorporated as an action step in the plan as well,” Kelly said.

The community recreation plan, she added, is being amended to address improvements in the way future recreational programming is developed, executed and evaluated.

A copy of the proposed amendments is available online at www.metroparks.com/about-us/planning-department, and input and comments will be accepted at nina.kelly@metroparks.com.

Printed copies will be available, for a two-week public review through Jan. 9, at the following local locations: the Shelby Township Public Library, 51680 Van Dyke Ave. in Shelby Township, and the Stony Creek Metropark Office, 4300 Main Park Drive in Shelby Township.