Funding awarded for improvements to Ingham Co. parks and trails

EAST LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Back in November 2014, a millage to improve parks and trails in Ingham County was passed. Well now a grant of $788,863 was approved to help improve community trails in the area.

Once improvements are made, these trails will hopefully open up opportunities for people who haven’t had the chance to use them before.

“We didn’t know necessarily where we were going to get the money to do these improvements so to have the funds available to us and to be able to do it is great,” East Lansing Director of Parks & Recreation Tim McCaffrey said.

From sidewalk improvements, to making trails more compliant to fit everyone’s needs Ingham County is eager to revamp its area parks after getting much needed money to do it.

“What we will be doing is projects like cracked ceiling and we’ll be doing a coating system and we’ll be doing ADA improvements,” McCaffrey stated.

Improvements that East Lansing Mayor Mark Meadows says are necessary for the city because when compared to other amenities, people use parks more often than not.

“This is the most, one of the most important amenities that we have in this city and the one that most people use,” Mayor Meadows said.

Meadows says although a reduction in state funding has set the city back from keeping up with its infrastructure, he’s excited to make these corrections to its trails.

“Connectivity is very important connecting to Lansing, connecting to Meridian Township, connecting to Bath Township, Dewitt Township will be an objective for the city of East Lansing,” Meadows mentioned.

Besides these park improvements, East Lansing city officials say more plans are on the horizon.

“We just submitted a grant request for pedestrian bridge improvements,” McCaffrey stated.

Funding for a better future is what park officials say is desperately needed.

“It is really a good thing and it’s…we really appreciate getting this funding,” Mayor Meadows said.

The city of East Lansing has to go through a contract with Ingham County before any improvements are made but those plans for Ingham County parks and trails will begin in the Spring and Summer of 2017.

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