Passenger Rail, City Parks and State Street: 3 Ways to Have a Say
If you’re itching to get your civic participation walking shoes on, next week has three events to attend: 1) Rail Plan workshop (Wed), 2) TC Parks and Recreation master plan workshop (Thurs), 3) a second MyWHat observational street walk (Fri).
1) Rail Plan: Step Aboard
The MDOT forum is a public workshop to present current rail lines and to gather comments on the future MDOT passenger/freight rail plan. This isn’t going to connect us by rail to Grand Rapids, but it is one of the first steps.
The meeting is Wednesday September 22 between 4-7:30PM at the Michigan Works! Center. (map)
If you can’t make the meeting, you can make public comments online
2) Parks and Recreation: Let’s See some Intention
The parks commission will be presenting background on existing park planning efforts, reviewing a draft set of some new parks and recreation goals for our community, and looking for participants to offer new park ideas and improvements to existing parks.
Many of the ideas generated will go into the city’s 5-year master plan required by the DNRE. It’ll be held in the Governmental Center’s cafeteria (basement) so that there is plenty of room to get out maps and start drawing some ideas.
This meeting is Thursday September 23 at 7PM in the Governmental Center cafeteria.
3) Community Observational Walk: State Street
In August a group of us walked Division St. to see what it was like at the walker’s level. It was revealing. Not only did I independently notice things never noticed, but walking with 9 more people provided more eyes, perspectives and, as our nerves got warped, support.
Less exciting noisy perhaps, but more central to many of our lives is Downtown’s part of State St. MyWHaT’s guest contributor Peter Spaulding has explored the disadvantages of one-way streets and hit on State Street as a possible re-conversion back to a two-way. The Downtown Development Board is discussing that topic this morning after receiving our letters.
Still, even if the city doesn’t move on changing State Street, that they will be putting in a new parking deck at West Front and Pine St. offers a clear opportunity to transform State Street into something more than a parking lot for Front St. and a place simply to pass through. Let’s walk it and see how the street works for people.
This walk will be Friday September 24th at 4PM starting at the Pine and Front intersection (you can RSVP at the link). We will walk to Boardman Ave. and then walk back. Possible discussion at a local watering hole to follow. If you can’t make 4pm, but want to take part, please RSVP and suggest another possible time.