On Monday, June 29, the Fenton Township Board of Trustees voted 6-1 to adopt a resolution in support of the Silver Lake Road Connector Trail and a grant application.
Clerk Robert Krug was the dissenting vote.
This came a few days after the Fenton City Council approved a similar resolution. The 2-mile non-motorized pathway would connect the pathway at the northwest corner of Arbor Drive and Silver Lake Road to the pathway along E. Broad Street, at Triangle Park, in Linden.
The $997,000 grant would come from the Michigan Department of Transportation’s (MDOT) Transportation Alternatives Program, also called the MDOT TAP Grant.
The LAFF (Linden, Argentine Township, Fenton Township, Fenton City) Pathway group has been working for years on developing non-motorized pathways in local communities.
The city of Fenton was asking for support as the Act 51 agency, meaning the city will act as the fiscal agent and take the lead on the project, along with the LAFF Pathway group.
It would be a 10-foot wide bituminous (asphalt) paved pathway with a minimum of 2 feet clearance on either side, or a 14-feet wide reinforced boardwalk with all improvements meeting state requirements.
The four municipalities, along with Southern Lakes Parks and Recreation (SLPR), have allocated $15,000 to the project for matching funds, and LAFF Pathways have allocated $48,000.
The project has received approximately $441,509 from the Genesee County Metropolitan Planning Commission to be received in 2023.
The grant only partially funds the project. So far, approximately $1,002,000 has been raised in private funding and additional grants. If approved, the MDOT grant would provide an additional $997,000 to fund the project in 2023.
If all the grants they plan to apply for come in, they will need to raise approximately $600,000 in private funds and donations.
The Silver Lake Road Connector Trail has been identified as a Tier 1 Short Term Priority in the Genesee County Regional Non-Motorized long range transportation plan. Tier 1 projects are identified as having strong southern support and are the highest priority for development.
Krug mentioned the millage vote that failed in Fenton, Fenton Township and Linden that would have raised taxes to develop non-motorized pathways. The taxpayers voted no on it, he said.