Press Releases

Posted on: October 28, 2016

Clinton River Restoration Project opens new recreational opportunities in Sterling Heights

At its November 1st, 2016 regular meeting, the Sterling Heights City Council will receive a presentation on the progress being made on the Clinton River Restoration Project.

This initiative is funded by a $4.5 million grant from the United States Environmental Protection Agency to improve existing and create new habitat diversity for river wildlife, alleviate bank erosion, manage and remove log jams, and improve navigability of the Clinton River for canoeists and kayakers.

The joint presentation by City Development Manager Jason Castor and Jamie Burton, a consulting engineer with Hubbell, Roth & Clark, highlights the dramatic transformation of the Clinton River through the first season of work by the project’s contractors. To date, approximately five of the nine miles of river have received tree removal, bank stabilization, woody debris removal, and installation of natural features that create a habitat conducive to wildlife, particularly fish. The final stretch of four miles of river will be completed next summer.

The City emphasizes that this is simply the beginning for the rebirth of the Clinton River. The City is actively engaged in the development of a Master Plan for the Clinton River, which will promote the river as an asset for all residents. In the spring of 2017, the City will open a portion of the Clinton River in Sterling Heights to canoeing and kayaking, with launches/landings available near Edison Court and Rotary Park. The City’s website will have a webpage dedicated to Clinton River events that promise fun for anyone wanting to experience a unique outdoor adventure. The Master Plan assures that the full potential of the Clinton River is realized.

“This project is the fulfillment of the City’s vision for creating a vibrant, active, and distinctive quality of life in Sterling Heights,” notes Mayor Michael Taylor. “Restoring the Clinton River to its full potential creates one more reason to live and recreate in Sterling Heights.”

Hubbell, Roth & Clark’s Jamie Burton concurs and adds, “Communities that invest in these natural assets see tremendous benefits. The fact that Sterling Heights has a very family-friendly stretch of the Clinton River will make it a destination.”

Sterling Heights City Manager Mark Vanderpool highlights the benefits of parks and recreation amenities and programs, including the Clinton River project. “The evidence supporting the benefits of parks, recreation, and physical activities is overwhelming. This project is consistent with the whole Recreating Recreation initiative that strives to create new ways for our residents to connect with the City. Restoring this river and opening it for recreational uses in the middle of a large city is a fantastic place making opportunity that our community can embrace.”

The Recreating Recreation initiative seeks to leverage the existing natural resource assets to create a City that provides its residents with year-round recreational opportunities. On Nov. 8, Sterling Heights residents will have the opportunity to vote on a dedicated parks and recreation millage. If approved, the millage will fund the City's Recreating Recreation initiative that would deliver a diverse mix of recreational opportunities to the City's residents, including a 120,000-square foot Community Center, an ice rink, a farmers market pavilion, a dog park, a skate park, a splash pad, a canoe and kayak livery, improvements to existing bike/hike trails, upgrades to neighborhood parks and much more. The scope of the proposed plan and estimated financial impacts on residents are available at www.sterling-heights.net/recreatingrecreation.

Media with further questions can contact Community Relations Director Bridget Doyle at bdoyle@sterling-heights.net or (586) 446-2471.

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