Non-profit makes land donation to city

Alex Doty • Oct 27, 2017 at 2:00 PM

A West Michigan non-profit organization has gifted a 1.2-acre plot of undeveloped land to the City of Grand Haven.

The city recently approved a request from the Wege Foundation to donate the land — located off Maryland Drive in Ferrysburg and adjacent to 140 acres of Grand Haven-owned land — to the city.

“They had a deal on it that apparently fell through earlier this year,” City Manager Pat McGinnis said.

Citing no further use for the land, the foundation contacted the city about acquiring it.

“The reason the Wege group approached us was because it does adjoin our property, and they thought maybe someday if that property were some open space use by the city, this 1.2 acres might complement that in some way,” McGinnis explained.

Deed restrictions on the property stipulate that the land be maintained in a natural state.

"There are deed restrictions that say we can never build on it or sell it to anyone to be built on," McGinnis said.

City officials note that the property has a taxable value of $119,700 for the City of Ferrysburg, which will be lost now that the property has been deeded to the municipality. Ferrysburg was not offered the property, it was noted.

Mayor Geri McCaleb called the property an “interesting piece of land,” noting that there was “no ill-will to the City of Ferrysburg” in taking it.

“Having looked at this piece of property and walked it, it is steep,” McCaleb said. “It is a very great view of the lake when you get up there and there aren’t too many leaves on the trees. I'm happy to take it because it adjoins other property we have.”

Councilman Bob Monetza also voiced his support for the donation.

“I think it'll be a good piece of land to put under the city's control and protection," he said.

Monetza noted that, like the city owning this piece of property in Ferrysburg, Ferrysburg owns the Kitchel-Lindquist Dunes Preserve located within Grand Haven’s city limits on the north shore.

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