On a night where many residents from the area had come to express their concerns with the Township board, the board meeting was filled to capacity, but the meeting started on a positive note. In a room filled with Meridian Township residents LuAnn Maisner stood out in her yellow blazer as she accepted Meridian Township’s Commitment to Excellence Award. Michigan Recreation and Parks Association (mParks) president, Brett Kaschinske began Meridian Township’s board meeting on Tuesday, March 17 by presenting the Commitment to Excellence Award to Meridian Township’s Director of Parks and Recreation, LuAnn Maisner. Kaschinske said her high levels of success were deserving of the award. “You have the trails, and parks mileage that you have you have expanded, and done so much for the community,” Kaschinske said.
The former Applegate Driving Range in Meridian Township will become a 23-acre park, with the start of construction planned for early 2017 and the debut expected in 2019. Located in the northern Haslett area off Lake Lansing, Towner Road Park aims to attract as many residents as possible.
It’s the only roof in Holt that needs a sprinkler system and a lawnmower. “If it becomes dry, don’t forget about watering your roof,” Mark Jenks, the Delhi Township Parks and Recreation director, said, laughing. “Yeah, it sounds crazy.”
It’s the roof of the Sam Corey Senior Center, the first and only Leadership in Energy and Design (LEED) building in the community. LEED buildings are marked by energy saving qualities in all aspects of their construction and design. The roof of the senior center is covered in sedum, a grass that can sustain high temperatures and low water and soil levels.
After years of lawsuits and court rulings, plans for the Central Fire Station construction are moving forward. The Meridian Township project has been on hold since 2012 after residents of the neighboring condominium complex sued the township in hopes of receiving a court order to stop progress on the site. “Now we’re waiting for the Michigan Supreme Court,” Meridian Township Treasurer Julie Brixie said. “The (condominium residents) have appealed the decision, but we have won all the way up and we’re waiting for the Supreme Court to reject it.”
Although there has not been an answer from the Michigan Supreme Court, the project is allowed to move forward because the court order to stop any progress was not granted to the residents of Autumn Park condominiums.
“When I arrived here to be the fire chief in 1998, some of the first things I looked at were equipment, the chain of command and the fire station replacement as one of the top priorities,” Fire Chief Fred Cowper said. “So we now have put a lot of work and effort in making that happen.”
The new Central Fire Station will be at the corner of Okemos Road and Central Park Drive, and includes space for the fire department’s administrative offices, new living areas for firefighters and will be up to “green” standards.
The holiday of Halloween might have once been a night dedicated to those of youth, but has become a time for adults. Many wonder where children come into play for this once youthful holiday. Bath Township, a small rural town where door to door trick or treating is close to impossible, is set to hold an annual event where kids are the focus of the night. Truck or Treat, once centered on an opportunity for large trucks and rigs to appear in a car show as well as provide treats for kids, will be held at the Bath Elementary school parking lot. ““It gives an opportunity, especially in some rural areas, for kids to trick or treat,” said Bath Elementary principal Zachary Strickler.
Meridian Township Parks and Recreation has created a five-year plan to enhance the quality of life for residents and visitors by providing diverse park facilities and recreation opportunities where participants are able be free and enjoy themselves. The Parks and Recreation staff led the planning process and preparation of the master plan, with assistance from the elected Park Commission and other township staff members. The intent of this plan is to identify the current and future parks and recreation needs to maintain and improve the quality of life in the community. “This plan serves as a guide for future projects in our community, and it also provides an opportunity for us to obtain input from the community to gauge how they feel about our park system,” said LuAnn Maisner, director of Meridian Township Parks and Recreation. A survey of Meridian Township citizens showed emphatic support for the maintenance, stewardship and development of quality parks and recreation facilities.
Residents expressed concerns about the location for the future dog park at the March 15th township board meeting. The park is planned for Legg Park at 3891 Van Atta Road, just south of the Harris Nature Center. “I recognize the need for dogs to exercise and I don’t disagree with desires of those wanting to have a dog park. What I do disagree with is the location,” said resident James Kenyon, who lives near the park on Van Atta Road. The dog park is part of the township’s five-year parks and recreation plan.