By Emily Nagle
The Meridian Times
Residents of Meridian Township will see the park millage finance renovations and development projects for the rest of the year.
With the .66 millage passed in the Aug. 5, 2014, general election, Meridian Township Parks and Recreation will receive approximately $1,042,000 a year for park development.
The millage will run for a total of 12 years. The owner of a home with a taxable value of $100,000 pays $66.67 a year for the millage.
Jane Greenway, parks and land management coordinator, said people recognize the value of green space for wildlife as well as property values.
“I think that people don’t want to see so much development and I think that people recognize the value of green space, you know, not only for them but for future generations,” Greenway said. “That’s something that attracts people to Meridian Township in contrast to other surrounding areas is the large number of protected parks and natural areas.”
Meridian Township has 29 parks and natural areas with more than 904 acres, and keeping the parks clean is a source of pride for the community.
“While preparing for a new park millage in 2014, park commission staff conducted an extensive review of maintenance needs as well as prioritizing a capital improvement plan,” director of Parks & Recreation LuAnn Maisner said.
The capital improvement plan includes 15 projects. The master plan for this year is working on 279 acres, Maisner said.
Many projects are in place for the upcoming year, such as adding parking lots, playgrounds, fencing, athletic fields, and other improvements.
A large upcoming project is developing a new park on Towner Road, a 22-acre athletic park in the northern part of the Haslett area. It is a $2.1 million project that will be under construction for two to three years.
Orlando Park, Hilbrook Park and Nancy Moore Park with all be receiving new playground structures over the few years.
The Harris Nature Center and Nancy Moore Park will be receiving an updated or brand new pavilion.
Residents will see changes starting with the construction of the sand volleyball courts at North Meridian Road Park.
“It kind of tells the story about the community you’re living in if you have nice parks,” said Greg Grothous, recreation specialist. “If they’re well maintained, it’s kind of a selling feature for the community and a point of pride for the residents, also.”
View a map of the parks of Meridian Township.