Ingham County Park Officials say infrastructure repairs at Lake Lansing Park North are long overdue.
They're working on a proposal to line a portion of the trail with crushed limestone, but some trail users aren't happy.
The park has more than ten miles of trail stretched across 530 acres.
Ingham County Parks Director Tim Morgan said they're considering a $1.5 million proposal to make improvements to the trail loop.
“We’ll have removal and replacement of the existing boardwalk and widen that out to eight-foot and make it universally accessible,” Morgan said.
Morgan said adding crushed limestone to level the trail out with the boardwalks will help with accessibility.
“The area we would be looking at for improving with crushed stone for ADA accessibility is about 1.4 miles out of the total ten miles of trail that are there,” said Morgan.
Bob Wilson has used the trails for years.
“I am a long-time trail user and have been running and hiking on Lake Lansing Park North trails for probably 30 years,” Wilson said.
Wilson said he thinks crushed limestone will create a hazard for people using the trails.
“Rather than being an assist for people who want to use those trails it will actually end up being an impediment," Wilson said. "Any time you put rock, any type of rock on natural surface trails it doesn’t stay there.”
He said he knows improvements need to be made.
“The boardwalks are aging and they are somewhat dangerous because boards do have a tendency to pop up, screws and nails pop up," Wilson said. "I am all in favor of replacing those boardwalks with new boardwalks.”
But wants to preserve the natural land.
“I am all in favor of retaining the natural surface trails the way they are right now and just continuing to make them available to the general public,” said Wilson.
Wilson said he's not only concerned about the limestone but also how the proposal has been handled by the commission.
““I found out about this proposal almost by accident back in February," Wilson said. "That’s about 90 percent of my gripe with this issue is the lack of public education on the proposal and public engagement and listening to what the citizens want on their parks and trails.”
Morgan said county officials will address questions and concerns at the Park Commission's May 24 meeting.
“I invite everyone to come to the park commission meeting on the 24th and encourage you to voice your opinion as well as hear about what’s going on,” Morgan said.
Improvements also include new signage, fitness stations and a new entrance gate. The project costs could be partially paid for by grants.
“The Land and Water Conservation Grant is a $500,000 grant and the Trust Fund Grant is a $300,000 grant,” Morgan said.
If the proposal passes, Morgan said construction would begin in spring of 2023 at the earliest.
More information on the project and the May 24 meeting can be found on the Ingham County Parks website.
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