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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Reopening Riverside Park in Detroit for the People in 2014

by  Richard Clement

During a recent inspection of City assets, we went to Riverside Park in Detroit Michigan located next to the Ambassador Bridge(click here).  This park was shut down on the allegation of contaminated land.  After further review, the park has been shut down long enough.  Our plan to reopen the park is to remove layers of dirt and restore the land with natural compost and mulch.  Neighborhood experts in growing (mostly Senior Citizens) and consultants in the form of students majoring in agriculture will be tapped to lead the way in restoring this park.  Detroit residents attending schools with agriculture programs (example: Michigan State, Tuskegee, Tenn. St, Florida A&M, et al) will get preferences to work on this program for College Credit. In other words, this will be on of the greatest Brownfield Projects ever undertaken by the City of Detroit.

For too long this park has been a victim of politics, neglect and, used like a Knight on a Chess Board.  Benches are in disrepair, the garbage is not picked up at all and, the Boat Launch was shut down also.  Community participation and financial investment from grants will be considered to help restore this park into a place for the people to relax, fish and, play baseball on.    Meanwhile, the area that the mail boat occupies is very clean and properly maintained.  This park needs some help from the Federal Government along with City of Detroit citizens working as one to make this park viable again.

If we are going to come back as a City, Parks and Recreation must be fully funded to sponsor programs and activities like a fishing derby or, something similar to it for Senior Citizens and youth.   We are encouraging you all to show up in person every Thursday at 1pm on the 13th floor of City Council and address your concerns to Councilwoman Mary Sheffield (click here), chair of the Neighborhoods and Community Services Committee (click here).   Emails and phone calls work well too and, your voice will be respected, evaluated and, heard.  Citizens are allowed to speak during public comment for 2 minutes.     The famed two minute drill is a standard procedure for public speakers, unless you write a request to Council President Brenda Jones(Click Here) to speak.  If approved you will be granted 4 minutes to speak.

Otherwise it’s time to re-store and repair one of Detroit’s hidden assets for the good of the Citizens of Detroit. Especially the ones on the riverfront who live there.

Otherwise, please show up to Vote in 2014 to keep Detroit moving!

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