Chelsea is seeking grant help for trail project

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A recent look at a section of pathway at Timbertown. photo by Lonnie Huhman

In an effort to further improve the community trail system, the city of Chelsea is applying for a grant that could help complete the Letts Creek Trails.

The Sun Times News (STN) learned about Chelsea applying for the grant and reached out to Chelsea City Manager Roy Atkinson for more information about this possibility.

He said Chelsea is applying for a Michigan DNR Spark Grant and the city should know by mid-January if the application was successful.

The grant is described as, "Michigan Spark Grants are a $65 million program that represents a milestone moment for outdoor recreation, helping local communities that want to create, renovate or redevelop public outdoor opportunities for residents and visitors – especially those whose economic opportunities and health were hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant is administered by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Michigan Spark Grants will support projects that provide safe, accessible public recreation facilities and spaces to improve people’s health, introduce new recreation experiences, build on existing park infrastructure and make it easier for people to enjoy the outdoors. This grant opportunity is possible because of the Building Michigan Together Plan, signed in March 2022, which included a historic infusion of federal funding in our state and local parks."

The grant would help fund the remaining Letts Creek Trails (west and south spurs) out of Timbertown Park.

Here is Atkinson’s description of the project: “Informed by thoughtful community input and conceptual design, the proposed Letts Creek Trail project was initially proposed in 2015.The eastern segment of the trail network, which extends through Timbertown Park to Veterans Park, was completed in 2021.In this proposal, western and southerly segments of the Letts Creek Trail are proposed and will connect residents of the Chelsea with the Border-to-Border Trail and Timbertown Park. This project will add much needed regional/community connectivity to existing parkland and to multi-functional recreational trails. This project is informed by a comprehensive community survey and an approved municipal parks plan.”

Although it’s not a sure thing yet, the grant would be a big help. STN asked Atkinson if there’s anything in particular the community should know.

“We are excited and enthusiastic about this potential grant opportunity,” he said. “This is a great community grant opportunity that we hope we are successful at applying for that as it will add much needed regional/community connectivity to existing parkland and to multi-functional recreational trails.”

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