A plan designed to guide parks, open space and recreation decision-making of Livingston County government over the next five years is set for final approval.

The Livingston County Parks & Open Space Plan covers 2019 – 2023 and is a complete update of the current five year parks plan. It helps the county remain eligible for MDNR grants and is also a decision making tool for the Parks & Open Space Advisory Committee regarding Lutz County Park and Fillmore County Park. The plan inventories all parks in the county including state and local parks and sanctuary land while laying out goals and objectives, along with potential action steps. Prior to completion of the plan, the Parks & Open Space Advisory Committee, a sub-committee of the Livingston County Board of Commissioners, gathered input from various residents and stakeholders and also conducted public survey to see what type of features people most want to see in county parks. Topping the list were water features such as splash pads and public pools, followed by trails of all types whether for walking, running or hiking and bike trails for BMX bikes.

Livingston County Planning Director Kathleen Kline-Hudson says the five-year plan should prove valuable to the public, noting there are complete chapters on both Lutz and Fillmore County Parks with a full history of each, what work has been done so far and what they hope to do in the future. Once formally approved, the plan will keep Livingston County eligible to apply for federal and state grants related to parks and recreation, such as the grant that is helping partially fund Phase 1 development of Fillmore County Park. Kline-Hudson noted they are preparing to start construction on Phase 1 and will be breaking ground on April 30th. A ceremony is scheduled at the park to mark the occasion at the northeast corner of Kellogg and McClements Roads. Work involves construction of a parking lot, a multi-use sports field, an accessible unisex waterless bathroom and 5K trail. Phase one construction should be completed within 60 days and a grand opening celebration will follow.

The complete Parks & Open Space Plan is attached. The plan will be before the Livingston County Board of Commissioners for final approval on Tuesday night. The meeting starts at 7:30pm in board chambers of the county administration building. Photos: Livingston County. Lutz & Fillmore County Park. (JM)