Government, Real Estate, and Sustainability

Ottawa County acquiring land for trails

January 16, 2019
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covered bridge along Grand River Ottawa County
A shot of the Grand River running through Ottawa County. Courtesy Ottawa County Parks Foundation

Two parcels of land “crucial” to connecting the region’s trail systems are being acquired by Ottawa County

Ottawa County said last week it has acquired a 1,000-foot-long easement connecting a park property on Cottonwood Drive to the riverfront for $10,000, and it has signed a purchase agreement to acquire 16.5 acres of land on the Grand River with 651 feet of riverfront in Georgetown Township for $100,000.

The acquisitions are expected to be complete by the end of January. 

The Ottawa County Parks Foundation is providing all the funding for the purchases through the $41-million Grand River Greenway Campaign, a 30-year plan to establish 30 miles of public trails that will connect 8,500 acres of land and provide links between Grand Rapids, Grandville, Jenison, Grand Valley State University’s campuses and the lakeshore in Grand Haven.

“More work still needs to be done, but we are two steps closer to achieving one of the major goals of the Grand River Greenway Initiative, which is to connect existing Kent Trails in Grandville to the future Idema Explorers Trail,” said John Scholtz, parks director, Ottawa County.

Construction of a new 1.17-mile segment of the Idema Explorers Trail along Cottonwood Drive is scheduled to begin in spring 2019.

The county said if additional land or easements can be acquired, design work would immediately begin on a segment of the Idema Explorers Trail that would connect the Cottonwood Drive segment to the existing Kent County trail.

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