Home > Complete Streets, Safety Issues, Walking > GT Civic Center: Could Accessibility Be Improved?

GT Civic Center: Could Accessibility Be Improved?

Utilized: Social Trail

Not your typical social trail, but the west entry into the Grand Traverse County Civic Center can get a bit narrow for everyone involved, especially when busses are present. Yesterday when I was walking next to the busses, a motorist entering the Civic Center barely saw me as I jumped into an adjacent driveway.

It might not be a priority area, but sidewalks into our main recreational park seems like a good idea. I use this entrance enough to know that it isn’t always comfortable to be on foot or wheel. The county is about to re-do the master plan for the park, so perhaps accessibility from the neighborhoods will be considered. If not sidewalks, perhaps some paint would help. A DIY counterflow multi-use trail anyone?

I could be wrong, just throwing it out there.

UPDATE: Ran into Jason Jones, director of Grand Traverse County Parks and Recreation, and asked if this area could be considered under the master plan process. Short answer: certainly. It’s a recognized problem area. I forgot to ask when the public process for the master plan will be…sorry. Here is a Ticker article about it though, and the number to call is: 231- 922-4818

  1. Chris Walter
    February 10, 2011 at 11:40 am


    You’ll dig this one:

    Chris Walter

  2. Jen
    February 10, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    I agree Gary. As a mom of two young kids I have walked many times to the Civic Center and have been frustrated by having to walk on the road, not because of sidewalks not being cleared of snow but because there are no sidewalks. For this reason I often opt to go to F & M instead (at least when a playground is the main objective).

  3. February 10, 2011 at 1:48 pm

    Gary: Right on. This is low hanging fruit to improve accessibility to a community gem. It’s a pedestrian and recreational destination that’s available year round….all the more reason we should have safe sidewalks into this facility.


  4. Hans Voss
    February 10, 2011 at 2:08 pm

    absolutely. the civic center is a central public resource. my kids walk there every day, often before sunrise, and there is great need for better, safer access.

  5. kwhite
    February 10, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    The Civic Center drive is a kind of a gray area, like a street/parking lot hybrid. Yes, there is a lack of sidewalks coming in both the Garfield and 8th entrances; vehicle speed is also a big issue. There are kids all over the place, catching the bus and recreating, and sadly there are no designated crosswalks. And I don’t think there’s a posted speed limit (should be less than 25mph).

    And to be pissy, the cops that play hockey there in the mornings during the week, they FLY through there in the dark, doing around 40 mph. Mutha Uckers!

  6. Bob Otwell
    February 11, 2011 at 9:21 am

    The County/Civic Center actually added a nice sidewalk along West Civic Center Drive that extends to their west property boundary when they upgraded their parking lots 5 years or so ago. At that time, the county also extended a nice trail south to connect to the primary trail around the Civic Center. See google maps.

    The solution will involve the city, TCAPS and TBA-ISD. The congestion is much worse now because a new bus pick up is located on this drive. I like the idea of a temporary two way trail marked with paint until a separate sidewalk is extended to Garfield. Clearing the sidewalk in the winter is of course another issue.

    (Gary – map link) http://maps.google.com/maps?client=safari&rls=en&q=city+of+traverse+city+map&oe=UTF-8&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=Traverse+City,+MI&gl=us&ei=q0JVTc34M4OglAf0kZzsBw&sa=X&oi=geocode_result&ct=image&resnum=1&ved=0CBgQ8gEwAA

  7. February 14, 2011 at 8:40 am

    Thanks for the posting. Accessibility is an issue that we would love to hear about next week. Grand Traverse County Parks and Recreation will be hosting the first public input session regarding the Civic Center Master Plan at 6:00 pm on Tuesday, February 22, in the Civic Center Meeting Room. We look forward to a discussion on this issue, as well as any other input related to the Civic Center. We look forward to seeing you all there. Please contact our office with any questions/comments at 231-922-4818, or at parks@grandtraverse.org

    Civic Center Master Plan Public Input #1
    Tuesday, February 22, 2011
    6:00 pm
    Civic Center Meeting Room

    Thank you

    Jason Jones, CPRP
    Grand Traverse Parks and Recreation Director

  8. February 14, 2011 at 9:47 am

    Thank you for the information, Jason. The Civic Center is certainly a community treasure.

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