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Michigan Municipal League

Press Release


Contact:

Matt Bach
Director of Communications
Michigan Municipal League
(734) 669-6317; C: (810) 874-1073
mbach@mml.org; www.mml.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Feb. 5, 2020

Bold Plan Unveiled for Historic Area in Hamtramck

Report Builds Uon Community's Diversity

HAMTRAMCK, Michigan - A historic recreation area for the City of Hamtramck could become a destination for tourists and a vibrant gathering place for residents and visitors for years to come under a new comprehensive plan recently unveiled.

A preliminary summary of the Hamtramck Recreation District Plan was presented during a community celebration dinner Jan. 31 in Hamtramck. The long-term plan calls for rejuvenating Hamtramck’s publicly-owned greenspace, which includes the Veterans Memorial Park area, Keyworth Stadium, where the Detroit City FC now plays, and the historic Hamtramck Stadium, which was once home to the Negro National League Detroit Stars.

“We’re very excited for the public to see all their work over the last several months come to fruition in the form of this plan,” said Hamtramck City Manager Kathy Angerer in advance of tonight’s celebration. “The recommendations are very bold and do an excellent job reflecting our community’s cultural diversity. It radically transforms 26-acres of underutilized open space, recreation fields, and disconnected historic sites into a community-invested, inclusive, and world-class park.”

This Hamtramck Recreation District planning effort has been supported by a major grant from the Ralph C. Wilson Jr. Foundation. The City of Hamtramck and Hamtramck Public Schools have partnered to develop a plan for the revitalization of the Veteran’s Park publicly-owned greenspace.

The presentation of the plan was given by Ten x Ten consulting and Global Detroit, the team which led the design and community engagement effort for park plan.

The Michigan Municipal League Foundation has served as the fiduciary of the park area project.

Many months and years in the making, this plan represents a significant opportunity to assist in the transformation of Hamtramck and the Detroit metro area for the future.

Specifically, for the last year community members, business owners and nonprofit leaders have been sharing their ideas for the future use and improvements of the Hamtramck Recreation District area.


“The future of the Recreation District envisions a safe and accessible park, an activated and peaceful place that welcomes all of Hamtramck’s residents and visitors from Detroit and beyond,” according to an excerpt of the plan. “The park will be a place to engage history, celebrate diverse cultures and traditions, and adapt to a broad range of uses throughout the seasons and for years to come.”

Highlights of the plan include five transformative ideas that organize the program, circulation, and function of the park. The five transformative ideas are to:

  1. Make a Green Alley and Trail Loops

  2. Create Living Rooms

  3. Plant Gardens

  4. Define Neighborhoods

  5. Plan a Smart Phase 1 

For the next steps the report recommends a conversancy be formed to operate and manage the park moving forward. This effort could be modeled around the governance structure for the successful Detroit Riverfront. The report states creating a governance structure like a conservancy would provide for more long-term financial stability for the park area.

For additional information, contact Matt Bach, Michigan Municipal League communications director, at mbach@mml.org and (734) 669-6317.

About the League: Michigan Municipal League is dedicated to making Michigan’s communities better by thoughtfully innovating programs, energetically connecting ideas and people, actively serving members with resources and services, and passionately inspiring positive change for Michigan’s greatest centers of potential: its communities. The League advocates on behalf of its member communities in Lansing, Washington, D.C., and the courts; provides educational opportunities for elected and appointed municipal officials; and assists municipal leaders in administering services to their communities through League programs and services. Learn more at mml.org.

 

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