GRAND RAPIDS – Two Ottawa County parks and recreation projects have been recommended for six-figure grants by the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund.
The MNRTF recommended development grants of $ 300,000 and $ 237,000 for the Idema Explorers Trail and renovations at Kirk Park. A purchase grant of $ 128,700 was also recommended for Pier Cove Beach in neighboring Allegan County. Grant recommendations must be approved by the Michigan Legislature before going to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s office for signature.
The Idema Explorers Trail, slated for completion in 2022, is a 30-mile trail that connects the Grand River Greenway. Planning and development along the Greenway has continued in the county since 1989, with the ultimate goal of creating a trail system connecting Grand Haven to Grand Rapids.
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Curt TerHaar, who coordinates the planning and development of Ottawa County Parks and Recreation, said grant funding would be used to extend a connecting bridge at Stearns Bayou along the trail.
“We think it’s going to be a super popular segment,” he said.
Renovations at Kirk Park in West Olive include repair work on trails damaged by erosion from higher water levels. TerHaar also mentioned a new installation of family toilets and a more centralized and accessible play area for children.
In total, the MNRTF recommended $ 45.6 million for 117 land development and acquisition projects to be financed in 2022.
“The Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund continues to provide significant investments that create better and broader access to quality outdoor recreation opportunities for Michigan residents and visitors across our state,” Whitmer said in a statement. communicated.
“Whether you’re camping, enjoying a park near you, exploring forest trails, or just taking in a scenic view, all of these Trust Fund-funded experiences contribute powerfully to local economies and our mental and physical well-being.”