MUNDY TWP. — Spring is just 16 days away and, with the advent of warmer temperatures, Mundy Township officials are looking forward to seeing residents and visitors enjoying Genesee County’s newest outdoor recreation venue, Mundy Miracle Commons.
The 100-acre park on Hill Road opened in January, offering two miles of walking trails and plenty of room for future enhancements.
“We’ve received some very positive feedback about people being able to use the trail, even during some negative windchills,” said township Manager Chad Young. “We opted not to open the sledding hill this year, to enable the best opportunity for grass to grow when the season comes. But there’ve been some daredevils out there who’ve tried to use it.”
The walking trail is configured in two loops tucked in the idyllic recesses behind the bustling Hill Road corridor. Township officials plan to partner with neighboring Carman-Ainsworth Community Schools and the Genesee Intermediate School District to extend the trail to Van Slyke and Maple roads.
An additional trail extension along Hill Road, to the existing trail system in Grand Blanc Township, also is on the radar, representing a major priority for future development.
Grand Blanc Township and the Genesee County Metropolitan Planning Commission have been very enthusiastic in the ongoing development of non-motorized pathways in the southern and eastern sectors of the county, with the overall goal of providing a crucial link in the 2,000-mile, statewide Iron Belle Trail, which will extend from Belle Isle in Detroit to Ironwood in the western Upper Peninsula.
The existing pathway in Grand Blanc Township ends at Hill Road and Grand Pointe Blvd., about a mile from Mundy Miracle Commons
“Just being ambitious with the future in mind, I don’t think it would be out of the realm of possibility to run a sidewalk or trail along Hill Road,” Young said.
The crown jewel of the park will be the accessible baseball field which will be constructed in cooperation with the Miracle League of Greater Flint. Township and Miracle League officials are hopeful that construction will begin this year.
“That will represent a very unique offering to the region, allowing individuals of all abilities to get out and experience some physical recreational opportunities and team sports opportunities,” Young said. “We built the park from the ground up around that mantra, whether it’s for baseball games or utilizing the trial, or whatever.”
Supervisor Tonya Ketzler has said the abundance of open space will offer unique opportunities for special events, possibly concerts, Shakespeare in the park, and tai chi.
The park also will help Mundy Township solidify its own identity separate from Grand Blanc, Flint and Swartz Creek, and create more of a downtown feel in the township that has seen extensive commercial growth in the Hill Road corridor.
As winter breaks, more finishing touches are in store for Mundy Miracle Commons.
“Probably the most exciting thing our parks and recreation advisory committee is working on is an offering for folks who would like to express selves philanthropically, if you will, by sponsoring benches or picnic areas,” said Young.
A number of clearings that were created throughout the trail to allow heavy vehicles to turn around are now grassy oases, providing opportunities for trail users to stop for a break to enjoy the surroundings, or have a picnic.
“We are exploring the potential to have folks sponsor benches or picnic tables for those areas,” Young said. “We’ve had some interest in that. We have three or four people who are waiting for us to finalize the package offering. We’re constantly looking for ways to partner with people who would like to assist us in bettering that 100 acres.”
The trails were built in loops to circumnavigate areas that ultimately will feature other attractions, possibly an amphitheater or other athletic courts.
Mundy Miracle Commons is open daily, with the Metro Police Authority opening and closing the facility, and the Swartz Creek public works department providing snow removal and other routine maintenance.