Crowdfunding Campaign Launched for the ‘Border to Border Trail – Chelsea Connection’

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A new section of B2B Trail at Dexter-Huron Metropark. Photo courtesy of Doug Coombe

From HWPI

A new segment of the Border-to Border (B2B) Trail in Washtenaw County will reach downtown Chelsea through a crowdfunding campaign, Huron Waterloo Pathways Initiative (HWPI) and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the nonprofit Huron announced today. The campaign is being offered through the Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity.

If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $50,000 by September 15, the project will win a matching grant with funds made possible by MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program. For project details and to donate, please visit: patronicity.com/b2btrail

“Creating connectivity between our public trails brings our communities together and provides new recreational opportunities for our residents,” said MEDC Senior Vice President of Community Development Michele Wildman. “We are pleased to support and provide resources for this project through our Public Spaces Community Places program.”

Huron Waterloo Pathway Initiative, in partnership with Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation (WCPARC) and the city of Chelsea, is building an extension of the Border-to-Border Trail that will connect you directly into Downtown Chelsea. This one-mile trail segment will provide trail users, businesses, visitors, and residents direct access to downtown to enjoy shopping, dining, and recreation along the trail.

This new section of trail will begin at Veterans Park, winding through Timbertown, and continue one mile north on a road separated path on M-52. The trailhead at Timbertown features extensive parking, restrooms, picnic pavilions and a play area. This section of the trail is part of a larger B2B Trail plan that will eventually connect Chelsea to Stockbridge. The trail will not only connect to downtown Chelsea but will traverse Michigan DNR's Pinckney and Waterloo Recreation area. This trail connection will add to the existing 4.8 miles of trail that were constructed in 2018-2020.

“HWPI is pleased to partner with the MEDC on the Border-to-Border Trail Chelsea Connector. When complete, residents and visitors will be able to connect directly into downtown Chelsea from the trail to access restaurants, shopping, and the recreational facilities at Timber Town and Veterans Park,” said Jeff Hardcastle, HWPI Board Chair. “This project is part of a series of dynamic connections that will significantly enhance non-motorized trail access in Western Washtenaw County.”

A new section of B2B Trail along Chelsea-Dexter Road. Photo courtesy of Doug Coombe.

Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity, in which local residents can use crowdfunding to be part of the development of strategic projects in their communities and be backed with a matching grant from MEDC. Communities, nonprofits and other business entities can apply at https://patronicity.com/puremichigan.

“The Michigan Municipal League is a firm believer in building community wealth in ways that build on existing assets and enhance the human experience for everyone,” said MML CEO and Executive Director Dan Gilmartin. “Expanding the Border-to-Border Trail to downtown Chelsea is community wealth building in action. With the public’s support, this project will improve the human experience for all for years to come. That is what community wealth building is about.”

The Public Spaces Community Places initiative started in 2014 with MEDC providing matched funding of up to $50,000 for community improvement projects throughout Michigan. As of June 30, 2021, MEDC has provided more than $8.6 million in matching grants. Since the launch of the program, 280 projects have been successful in reaching their goal, with $10.1 million raised from 48,922 individual donors.

About HWPI

HWPI is the 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that is responsible for private fundraising, community engagement, and ongoing support along the B2B Trail. HWPI works to facilitate the development of non-motorized recreational pathways and help connect the Border to Border Trail to Michigan’s expanding network of trails to build healthy, active, and connect communities.

For more information about the B2B Trail or HWPI, please visit the B2B Trail website at b2btrail.org

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