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Re: E-M:/ Wayne County Town Hall meeting tonight

Enviro-Mich message from Andrew Mutch <andrewimutch@yahoo.com>


Have potential park properties or properties for
acquisition been identified and brought forward to the
County? Knowing your involvement in this area, I'm
assuming that the answer is yes. But I know that local
and county officials often have to be pushed to even
look at these sites, much less consider them for
acquisition. You make a good point that Wayne County's
lack of effort in this area is in stark contrast to
Oakland County's aggressive efforts to acquire land
around the County. While I think many people assume
that much of Wayne County is too developed for
significant land acquisition, the reality is that
there are still areas of the County that have sizeable
amounts of undeveloped land. Also, there should be
opportunities in some of the more affluent portions of
the County to partner with the local governments to
pool funds to acquire land. 

Andrew Mutch

--- Smileysmlc@aol.com wrote:

> Doug,
> Correct.  To the best of my knowledge, no new park
> land has been purchased 
> despite the promise to use the millage money for
> that purpose.  Some money MAY 
> have been used for studies on Fort Wayne (although I
> doubt it), however there 
> is no evidence that Wayne County has done any work
> restoring this historic 
> treasure on the Detroit riverfront.
> In the 1960s, Wayne County had several hundred more
> acres of parkland than it 
> has today.  A lot of park land has been sold or
> given away to 
> developers--primarily in Dearborn along the Rouge
> River.  (Hundreds of acres of County land, 
> not designated but very suitable for parks, have
> also been disposed of at 
> bargain sale prices, even as low as $1.)  Other park
> land has been lost to sewage 
> retention basins and other non-park uses.  In the
> past 40+ years, except for 
> Crosswinds Marsh--which was established as a wetland
> mitigation project for 
> Metro Airport--the only other new park land for
> Wayne County was 40 acres which 
> were added in 1993 to the William P. Holliday Forest
> & Wildlife Preserve in 
> Westland.  The Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy
> purchased and transferred that 
> property to the County using a Michigan Natural
> Resources Trust Fund grant.  
> No County funds were used towards the purchase
> price, however I was very 
> grateful that the County accepted the property,
> given that I was involved in the 
> land purchase.
> I've lived in Wayne County all of my life (and even
> worked for the County for 
> a while), so it's sad to say that Wayne County is
> not looked upon in the most 
> favorable light when it comes to stewardship of our
> public park land or 
> public tax dollars.
> Jack Smiley
> P.S.  In the 1970s, Wayne County received about 10
> acres of parkland from 
> MDOT, but that was only to replace the amount of
> parkland which was taken in the 
> construction of I-275.  I'm aware of at least one
> other "public taking" which 
> involved replacement acreage, but never new and
> increased acreage.

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