Mason parks gets pedestrian bridge, make-over

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A pedestrian bridge over Sycamore Creek in Mason is in the works as part of a parks improvement program. The Mason City Council passed a resolution at its March 17 meeting to authorize the city administrator to enter into a project development agreement with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. <Listen to the story>

The Michigan Recreation Passport Grant Program has approved this the project for the development of the pedestrian bridge over Sycamore Creek and a trailhead signage to service serve as a link between trials trails and parking facilities.

City Administrator for Mason, Marty Colburn, spoke about the project at the council meeting. Colburn said it was no longer safe for cars to drive over the existing bridge.

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The total cost of the project has been estimated at the amount of 90-thousand-100 dollars, the city hopes to appropriate 30-thousand-100 dollars from the Iva Bond Trust Fund as its local match.

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Members of the council however, were reluctant to use money from the Iva Bond Trust Fund because the harsh winter months has caused high maintenance costs for the city. Mayor Pro Tem, Robin C. Naeyaert, expressed her concerns.

Due to a limit to the DNR Grant, however, the decision had to be made in order to move forward with the amendment that had already been approved. A local family however has donated money in order for the council to mitigate maintenance and reconstruction of the parks. The council has also worked to raise funding.

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Council Member, Jon Droscha, seemed to convince council members otherwise, saying that the money is there.

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The current balance of the Iva Bond Fund is at an approximate amount of estimated at more than six-hundred-thousand dollars. Council member, Elaine Ferris said maintaining the bridge should be of high priority because of pedestrian traffic.

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