Auburn Hills earns award for riverwalk plans

The vision of a riverfront park system linked to a regional trail network was enough for the city of Auburn Hills to take home a planning award for its Riverwalk master plan.

The city was awarded the Planning Excellence 2010 Award from the
Michigan Association of Planning last month. Brian Marzolf, Auburn
Hills’ recreation director, says the idea of a park-to-park trail has
existed in the city’s master plan for about 15 years, so it’s exciting
that it’s finally coming to fruition, especially with the latest vote of
confidence.

“It’s been talked about and been a vision in people’s minds over time,
but as most good planners know, you can’t build anything unless you
build a plan,” he says. “This is a great step for us to get that plan in
place. We’re getting closer to actually create something exciting.”

The Riverwalk will eventually connect to downtown, and to the regional
Clinton River trail, which runs through Oakland County. “It creates more
connections, and more opportunities for people to use them,” Marzolf
says.

Marzolf says the city is in the process of doing the legwork necessary
for the project, including gaining some easements between the existing
Riverside and River Woods parks, and securing funding for the project.
He hopes to have select design consultants by spring, bid out the
project next fall, and be constructing the Riverwalk by 2012 and 2013.

To come up with the plan, the city solicited input from residents,
business owners, elected officials and planners. Among its features will
be landscaping and infrastructure that will improve the riverfront’s
environmental quality.

Source: Brian Marzolf, recreation director, City of Auburn Hills
Writer: Kristin Lukowski