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It takes a lot of work to make the Metroparks work. Learn more about the ways our Planning & Development team helps us fulfill our mission.


Here at the Metroparks, our Planning & Development Department plays a critical role in making sure the improvements and enhancements we bring to our 13 properties are informed by relevant, accurate and useful data and analysis. 

The Planning & Development team focuses on creating and assessing ways to expand and strengthen our infrastructure and other assets, guided by three main goals identified in our Strategic Plan: Listen & Connect, Maintain & Invest, and Conserve & Steward.

Our staff has a deep academic and applied experience in a diversity of related disciplines, including urban and regional planning, landscape architecture, grant writing, policy, and public engagement. They’re responsible for leading and coordinating initiatives in: 

Community Recreation Plan

The 2023-2027 Community Recreation Plan was developed and approved by the Board of Commissioners and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) in 2023. The structure and contents of this planning document are specified by the Michigan DNR, and the Metroparks updates the plan every 5 years. The next planning process will be facilitated in 2026.

Park Access Plan

This plan identifies opportunities to connect the Metroparks to public transportation and nonmotorized transportation systems to increase access for all residents of the region.

Park Master Plans

The original park master plans were completed and approved by the Board of Commissioners between 2016 and 2018. These plans include assessments of conditions existing at the time of the plan development, a summary of public input, needs and opportunities, and action items for a 10-year planning horizon.

A five-year update was conducted for all park master plans, as an opportunity for each of the 13 Metroparks to review their master plan and make sure it is still relevant. This review included 1) major changes to facilities, infrastructure and programming in the park; 2) updated needs and opportunities; 3) completed action items; and 4) any new actions necessary to implement the goals and policies for the park.  The Board of Commissioners approves all updated master plans.

Stormwater Management Plan

Approved by the Board of Commissioners in September 2019, the Metroparks Stormwater Management Plan (developed by OHM Advisors) identifies project recommendations regarding stormwater conveyance structure maintenance and replacement, streambank restoration, shoreline protection, and green infrastructure projects throughout the system. The plan is divided into chapters by park. If you would like to provide comments and feedback on the Stormwater Managment plan, please click here to submit a contact form.

Livingston County Trail Connection Feasibility Report

The Livingston County Trail Connection Feasibility Study was funded by Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Legacy Fund through the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan in order to determine a final safe and efficient non-motorized connection between four large regional parks: Brighton Recreation Area, Huron Meadows Metropark, Island Lake Recreation Area, and Kensington Metropark. Funding through Congresswoman Slotkin’s FY 2022 Community Project Funding program will assist with the design engineering of the selected route alternative.

Two mountain bikers enjoy the trails at Stony Creek Metropark.


Throughout the year our planning and development team has a variety of opportunities for visitors and community members to provide input on projects and plans. Check back here periodically for how YOU can help guide future projects at the Metroparks.

2024 Land and Water Conservation Fund Grant Application

Lake St. Clair Metropark North Marina Bathhouse Renovation

Each year, your Metroparks seek grant funding to complement our annual budget, improve facilities, create or improve recreation opportunities, and increase accessibility – providing opportunities for everyone to enjoy the parks. This year, we are submitting one project to the Land and Water Conservation Fund to provide important amenities to the Lake St. Clair Metropark’s North Marina area. We are committed to removing barriers, creating and improving access, and increasing recreation opportunities for all, and if awarded, these grant funds will improve accessibility to water and trail recreation at Lake St. Clair Metropark.

We are seeking input on the proposed project: Lake St. Clair Metropark North Marina Bathhouse Renovation. If awarded, the grant project would renovate the existing restrooms with a new North Marina Bathhouse and associated amenities using universal design principles to improve accessibility – including adding an outdoor gathering space for visitors to relax along the lakeshore.

Below is a link to more information about the proposed project that includes a brief survey for your input at the end. We also want to hear from your family and friends if you can share the link below with them as well.

More Project Information and Survey:

Feedback and survey responses will be accepted until March 8, 2024. There will be a public hearing on Thursday, March 14, 2024 at 12:30 pm prior to the Metroparks Board of Commissioners meeting. The public is invited to attend the public hearing in person or virtually through Zoom. To access the meeting through Zoom that day, use the following:

Join Zoom

    Meeting ID: 830 5326 8394
    Passcode: 374003
  • Dial by your location
    +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
    +1 305 224 1968 US
    +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
    +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
    Meeting ID: 830 5326 8394
    Passcode: 374003

Your time and feedback will help guide the final project designs and lead to a stronger application for these grant funds, and we appreciate your help. Please contact Janet Briles, Chief of Planning and Development, at by end of Friday, March 8, 2024 with any other feedback you would like to share.

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