12 2 Harbert Pond

The Harbert Community Park pond fountain in action several months ago.

HARBERT — The Chikaming Township Park Board agreed to reject the inclusion of a Bank-Shot Basketball court from a proposed land donation in Union Pier during its Nov. 22 meeting.

It was noted that public comments on the donation of a quarter-acre parcel located at the northeast corner of Berrien and Isobel streets for use as a public park indicated opposition to the basketball feature.

The motion passed 7-0 by the Park Board on Nov. 22 included the following language:

“Due to the noise, traffic, parking and safety issues, the Bank Shot basketball court be taken off the table for further consideration.”

The motion also calls on the Park Board to “continue to explore possible uses for the property as a public park.”

The property owner (Alan Witt) has indicated to the township he would like the land to remain mostly wooded with an area be set aside for a children’s art area with tables and easels. The donor also is seeing to have naming rights for the park.

In response to a letter from Township Board member Rich Sullivan suggesting a new township park be located somewhere else, Park Board Chair Arthur Anderson said “We don’t have an offer of a park someplace else.”

Earlier in the meeting (during public comment) a neighbor of the potential park parcel noted that he has inquired about purchasing the property, which shares a border with his, so he could build “a smaller home” to be used as a summer home for one of his daughters, but has received no response.

Also on Nov. 22, Park Board members split 4-3 in rejecting the establishment of a protected wildlife area at the north end of the Harbert Community Park pond, and instead explore moving forward with plans to create a foot path in the area.

The path was opposed by neighboring property owner Joseph Reed, who asked why the potential of departing from a previous decision to protect wildlife corridors and natural areas within the park system was being considered.

In other Nov. 22 business, the Park Board:

Postponed taking action on bids to transform portions of Harbert Community Park through additions such as a stage and walking paths until additional information on one of the bidders could be obtained.

Agreed to add $5,000 for beach construction (bringing the total in that area to $15,000) in a Park Board budget proposal that will be submitted to township officials.

Was informed that the ice rink at Harbert Community Park would be set up in the near future.

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