Border-to-Border Trail looking to the Chelsea School District for help

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With a section of pathway running along Dexter-Chelsea Road and another section called the Chelsea-Stockbridge Corridor, the planners of the Border-to-Border (B2B) Trail are logically looking for a connecting route between the two, especially one near downtown Chelsea.

They’re looking to the Chelsea School District for some help.

At the May 9 CSD Board of Education meeting, Superintendent Julie Helber said the district has been in conversations with planners from the Huron Waterloo Pathways Initiative (HWPI).

She introduced the topic during information and discussion, so no decision was made by the board. However, the school board did see a proposed resolution and it’s expected the proposal will officially go before the board for a vote at an upcoming meeting.

The meeting agenda item was listed as “Resolution to allow AD Mayer Drive to be part of the Border-to-Border route.”

Helber said the planners are still putting together a desired route and they approached the district about this area that would have the pathway taking a route from where it ends at Freer Road over to the downtown area to connect to the other section near M-52.

One part of this plan is to use A.D. Mayer Drive.

Where the B2B Trail ends at Freer Road.

In follow up, Helber told The Sun Times News the plan would be to have AD Mayer part of the B2B route. She said if the school board passes the resolution, she will sign an agreement with the B2B planners and they will publish it as part of the route. In addition, signage will need to be placed to direct the foot/bike traffic through the route.

Other segments of the trail corridors still need plans, such as the Dexter-Chelsea route where the path has no connector between Dancer Road and where the Chelsea segment ends near the railroad tracks, near N. Lima Center Road.

The HWPI mission is to facilitate the development of non-motorized recreational pathways and to help link Michigan’s growing network of trails. We are working in partnership with the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission to complete the Border-to-Border Trail (B2B) and realize our vision of healthy, active, and connected communities.

Map of the current Dexter-Chelsea route. courtesy of the B2B trail website

Helber said they have consulted with the district’s attorney about a proposed agreement.

The resolution put before the school board states in part:

WHEREAS, the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission has led a multi-agency effort to develop the border-to-border trail (the "B2B Trail") since its inception in the late 1990s; and

WHEREAS, the B2B Trail is a product of an ongoing collaboration of communities and organizations who are dedicated to safe, accessible, shared-use, non-motorized recreation and transportation; and

WHEREAS, the B2B Trail has been proposed to utilize Mayer Drive, which drive is owned by the District and located in front of the District's middle school building; and

WHEREAS, the Board has reviewed this matter and has determined that it would be in the best interests of the District to permit the B2B Trail over and across Mayer Drive; and

WHEREAS, the Board has determined that the benefit of the B2B Trail to the District and its students, is fair value for entering into an agreement which permits the B2B Trail to utilize Mayer Drive; and

WHEREAS, the Board has determined that it would be in the best interests of the District to waive any applicable Board Policies and/or Bylaws, if any, related to entering into an agreement which permits the B2B Trail to utilize Mayer Drive; and

WHEREAS, the Board desires to authorize and direct Julie Helber, the Superintendent of Schools of the District, or her designee, to enter into an agreement which permits the B2B Trail to utilize Mayer Drive, subject to review and approval by the District's legal counsel.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT:

1. The Board hereby determines that the benefit to the District and the students for the B2B Trail's use of Mayer Drive is fair value for entering into an agreement which permits Mayer Drive to be used as part of the B2B Trail.

2. The Board hereby waives any applicable Board Policies and/or Bylaws, if any, related to entering into an agreement which permits the B2B Trail to utilize Mayer Drive

3. The Board hereby authorizes and directs Julie Helber, the Superintendent of Schools of the District, or her designee, to enter into an agreement which permits the B2B Trail to utilize Mayer Drive, subject to review and approval by the District's legal counsel.

4. All resolutions and parts of resolutions insofar as they conflict with the provisions of this resolution be and the same are hereby rescinded.

Chelsea-Stockbridge Cooridor. map courtesy of the B2B Trail website


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