Crowdfunding campaign launched for Lake Norcentra Park

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Michigan State Housing Development Authority and Rochester College with the City of Rochester and Rochester Hills today announced a new crowdfunding campaign through Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity. The campaign will support the project to enhance and preserve 14 acres of green space, wetlands, and woodlands in the heart of Rochester and Rochester Hills, which will be open and accessible to the public while connecting directly to downtown Rochester via the Clinton River Trail.

If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal or $50,000 by October 22, the project will win a matching grant with funds made possible by MSHDA and MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program. For project details and to donate, please visit:

“We are excited to support the creation of Michigan’s first community-service learning park as part of the Public Spaces, Community Places program,” said MEDC Community Development Director Katharine Czarnecki. “The space creates more green space, increases direct connectivity to the local downtown, enhances boat and trail access and activates new space accessible for the public.”

The Lake Norcentra Park project affects 14 acres of Rochester College’s campus. The park sits next to the Clinton River Trail less than a mile from downtown Rochester. Lake Norcentra Park will offer the public free access to outdoor art, food, leisure activities, and nature with direct access from the Clinton River Trail connecting directly to Downtown Rochester.

Lake Norcentra Park features will include: Concessions and picnic garden accessible from Clinton River Trail, Public art installations (including Rochester Community Mural), Bench and hammock seating, Green space, Bike parking and repair station, Interpretive signage that shares the historic and natural features of the park, ADA-compliant pedestrian trails, Boat access (Clinton River), Fishing access (Clinton River and Lake Norcentra), Indoor/outdoor community activity center, Gathering places for outdoor learning programs and social activities, Live art, food, and music programs year-round, and K-12 outdoor science camps and field trips.

“The League strongly believes in the concept of placemaking and creating spaces that draw and attract people to a community,” said Dan Gilmartin, CEO and executive director of the Michigan Municipal League. “Having vibrant, accessible park areas are great placemaking tools for any community and if people support this crowdfunding effort for Lake Norcentra Park it can be a source of pride for the community for years to come.”

“Families at the college have known this place for decades and it’s special to a lot of them. Anything worth loving is worth sharing. We think it’s time to open Lake Norcentra Park to our neighbors in the community so it can become special to them as well,” said Tom Rellinger, VP of Development, Finance, and Operations at Rochester College. “We hope the park is a great asset to active lifestyles, education, and preserving nature in the Rochester region for decades to come.”

Public Spaces Community Places is a collaborative effort of the MEDC, MSHDA, the Michigan Municipal League, and Patronicity where local residents can use crowdfunding to be part of the development of strategic projects in their communities and be backed with a matching grant from MEDC. Communities, non-profits and other business entities can apply at

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