The proposed plan would stabilize the shores of Saginaw Park, link hiking trails

SAGINAW, MI – Executives at Saginaw later this month may approve a five-year strategic plan document for its city park system.

A draft of 287 pages outlines the priorities which include the stabilization and repair of the riparian shores that border the city-managed parks as well as the connection of existing hiking trails throughout the region.

The city council will vote on whether to approve the document at its meeting on Monday, January 24. If OK, officials said city hall staff would submit the plan to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources by Tuesday, February 1, the deadline that would make Saginaw eligible for upcoming grants from the Land and Water Conservation Fund.

“Ideally, this is a roadmap for decisions made over the next five years for our parks and recreation and open spaces,” said Cynthia Todd, director of planning at the firm. engineering based at Saginaw, Spicer Group.

The Spicer Group was hired to help city hall staff create a municipal strategic plan for operations that include Saginaw Parks. Meetings with regional stakeholders as well as community surveys in 2021 provided guidance for creating the document’s content, Todd said.

“The focus was on trails and trail connections, both for land and water connecting to the river,” Todd said of the community feedback.

The project outlines plans to stabilize riverbanks along city-operated sites including Crayola Park, Iron Belle Trail, Ojibway Island, and Wickes Park. The plan would also continue efforts to connect trails across the city with trails in neighboring communities, the document said. The proposal also provides for the organization of meetings with residents as well as with community partners to identify resources and specify objectives.

The park proposal is available online.

The council will meet to vote on the plan at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 24 at Saginaw City Hall 1315 S. Washington.

The document estimates that the city includes 288 acres of regional park, or sites the city shares with municipal neighbors and community partners. These parks include Andersen Enrichment Center, Frank N. Andersen Celebration Park, Hoyt Park, Japanese Cultural Center, Lake Linton and its Reservoir, Morley Plaza, Pothoff Park, Rust Park on Ojibway Island, Saginaw Children’s Zoo, Webber Park and Wickes Park .

The city’s neighborhood and community sites include Dr. Archer Claytor Park, Biltmore Park, Bliss Park, Crayola Park, Deindorfer Woods, Fordney Park, Garber Tennis Courts, Germaine Park, Haljean Park, Jeffer’s Park, Lawrence McKinely / Vet’s Park, Linton Park, Merrill Park Center, Otto Roeser Park, Park Place, Potthoff Park, Schroeder Park, St. Vincent’s Park, Unity Park, Weadock Park and Westside Riverfront Park.

Saginaw also has a regional trail system that includes nearly 6 miles of the Iron Belle Trail along the Saginaw River, nearly 7 miles of the Saginaw River Loop Trail, and nearly 3 miles of the Green Point Environmental Nature Trail.

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