Michigan's Trailways Leap Forward with Connecting Michigan
The year-long efforts of 10 task forces on statewide trail issues culminated recently in the release of "Connecting Michigan: A Statewide Trails Vision and Action Plan" (download a PDF of the plan), a report issued by project partners: Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance, the National Park Service Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program, and Michigan Recreation and Park Association Trails, Greenways, and Blueways Committee. Approximately 180 trail advocates, state, regional, and local government elected officials and personnel, and the general public gathered at the Library of Michigan on May 15, 2007 to hear the highlights of the groups' work and to hear commentary from Michigan Department of Natural Resources Director, Rebecca Humphries; Michigan Department of Transportation Chief of Staff, Leon Hanks; Michigan Department of Community Health Director Janet Olszewski; and Frederick Meijer, Chairman Emeritus of Meijer, Inc.
The task forces each covered distinctly different topics:
The deliberations of these task forces comprised of over 100 individuals resulted in 39 goals and 109 action steps!
Four overarching goals emerged which form a framework for an interconnected trailway network which connects every region of the state.
The next step in the project is to garner as many endorsements as possible from agencies, coalitions, and individuals alike who support the recommendations. The endorsements will then be used to build momentum for funding, legislative action, and advocacy which will drive the implementation of the Connecting Michigan plan. Michigan Trails and Greenways Alliance will monitor the progress of the plan as well as undertake many of the action steps in addition to encouraging other groups to take the lead on other recommendations. MTGA will also dovetail their work with the Governor's state trails initiative, "Michigan Trails at the Crossroads: A Vision for Connecting Michigan" (download a PDF from MI DNR), since the two plans work very well together.
Click here for the endorsements that have been received so far.
This page last updated on 10/24/2007.