Photos: New pedestrian pathway forms expanded linear park in Pleasant Ridge

img_3490Tonight I took advantage of the fine late-November weather and rode my bike through the neighborhood when I stumbled upon a nice surprise at series of formerly disjointed green spaces along the railroad tracks in Pleasant Ridge.

I hadn’t been over here in a while and found what was obviously a freshly laid asphalt pathway connecting what were formerly two disconnected city parks and a municipal dog park.

img_3489The broad, paved pathway connects Victoria Park, starting at Sylvan Street to the south, through Gainsboro Park all the way to the city’s dog park along the border of the I-696 service drive (technically known as East 10 Mile Road).

It’s a nice place to ride, and it does wonders to tie together what had previously felt like chopped-up parks, soccer and baseball fields, tennis courts and green spaces.

img_3497Before, you mostly had to walk or ride your bike over grassy areas or softball diamonds to reach the rest of the park if you didn’t want to ride the long way around the block. Now, they’re much more seamlessly connected, and the pathway makes the narrow ribbon of a park feel much larger and more accessible.img_3495

The project is also notable for what’s no longer there. Construction documents posted online show that crews have removed trees and stumps, fences, curbs and gutters, overhead power lines and utility poles, and lots of pavement. Gainsborough Avenue, viewable in the map below, is gone.

img_3494A parent I know from coaching soccer who was there with his son on Sunday told me that the city demolished a home that had long sat unsold on the market to accommodate the pathway. Unfortunately, the pathway also appears to have sacrificed a large community garden near Devonshire.

New parking lots have been added in spots where residential streets dead end at the park.
New parking lots have been added in spots where residential streets dead end at the park.

Gainsboro Park also sports new playground equipment and a renovated shelter, courtesy of $150,000 from the Pleasant Ridge Foundation, according to the Woodward Talk, a weekly local newspaper. Voters in the city in 2014 also approved a parks-improvement millage that will bring in $1 million over 10 years.

The city is working with Detroit-based livingLAB. You can view construction drawings and other information about the project here.

5 thoughts on “Photos: New pedestrian pathway forms expanded linear park in Pleasant Ridge

  1. From what I saw on the plans the park connection/expansion project still includes the community garden. It was been moved to utilize the end of the existing dog park. This area will provide much better sunlight for the garden. Also in the plans is a smaller area in the dog park for small dogs. A win win for everyone.

  2. Just a little note, the “home” you are referring to was OUR home, it didn’t long sit unsold on the market. The city purchased our home using a 3rd party, unknown to us or our realtor. We were devastated to learn of their plans, as this was the home I purchased as a single woman, had 2 dogs, got married, raised our daughter, fought a battle with breast cancer & was a part of the community. We made several friends & attended PR parties, walked our dogs & enjoyed the parks and pool. I am glad the community will enjoy the new area, but we were very sad to see our home demolished, That house will always be special to our family.

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