Park's parking project to be done 1 day before Kite Fest

Alexander Sinn • Apr 3, 2019 at 12:00 PM

Huge chunks of concrete are being ground into a gravel foundation for a new parking lot at Grand Haven State Park.

Ground was broken recently on the final phase of a project to renovate the state park campground’s crumbling pavement, and is expected to wrap up just in time for the new Kite Festival at Grand Haven.

Two work sites are currently closed at the park: the southern-most parking area and the northeast parking area. Michigan Department of Natural Resources District Supervisor Gary Jones said these will see the addition of 98 new parking spaces. 

Work is set to be completed May 17, the day before the new Kite Festival takes place at the adjacent City Beach, Jones said. 

“Weather can have an impact on paving projects based on when asphalt plants get operating,” Jones explained. “This is prep work, so that when asphalt becomes available, you can lay it. We don’t anticipate that being an issue.”

A grant of $1.9 million from the Michigan Economic Development Corp. in September 2018 helped get the project underway, in addition to roof replacement at the pavilion building. About $800,000 of this grant is for the parking construction, Jones said.

An additional $1.5 million from a state appropriations bill in December 2018 will help with interior remodeling of the state park’s pavilion. That project is in the early conceptual phase, Jones said.

The state park’s traffic loop and parking spaces near the channel are open year-round, with the beach parking lots opening May 1. The camping season is extended this year through Oct. 26. The 174 campsites host more than 19,000 camp nights annually.


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