HWPI Partner Spotlight: Peter Sanderson

HWPI is excited to spotlight B2B Trail Partner: Peter Sanderson – Principal Park Planner with Washtenaw County Parks & Recreation Commission (WCPARC) and the project lead for much of the planning, design, and day-to-day B2B operations for the organization. A Licensed Landscape Architect with degrees from MSU and UM, Peter has worked for WCPARC since 2011.

Peter and Megan Sanderson

Since the late 1990s, when the idea of the trail was conceived, WCPARC has been the lead public agency on the B2B project, working to form partnerships with other municipalities and organizations to plan, design, and construct the trail. Peter explains, “Partnerships are vital to the success of the trail and we are excited to be working with HWPI, which has expanded the definition, the reach, and expediency of the progress of the trail.”

“The trail is like a Swiss army knife,” states Sanderson, “its multifaceted nature lets it fulfill many different needs. It connects people from all walks of life together. The B2B links a host of destinations together while capitalizing on our area’s first-class parks system, the river, and natural areas. It promotes safety, while being both a transportation corridor and a recreational destination for anyone who wants to use the trail, whether they are a commuter, an elite runner, a person with mobility limitations, or a child learning to ride a bike.”

Peter is from Ann Arbor where he has spent most of his life and currently resides with his wife, Megan. He is an outdoor enthusiast and spends as much time as possible biking, backpacking, running, competing in triathlons, paddling, and skiing.

Peter shares a story from this summer about an encounter he had on the B2B. “This summer, I had just finished a mountain bike ride at the DTE Trail in the Waterloo Recreation area and was riding the B2B back to the Green Lake Campground where my wife and I were camping for the weekend. When I got to the tunnel under M-52, which was 95% complete at the time, I came across a gentleman who was talking to our construction inspector, John. The man was in his late 70s and was not from the area but had driven out to ride his bike on the DTE trail, which he had heard was excellent. He realized that the mountain bike trail was too difficult for him but he was ecstatic to find the B2B just across the street, which he described as “just his speed!” It is satisfying to be able to meet the needs of so many members of the community and to see people using and enjoying the trail.”

Sanderson says, “The support and hard work provided by my colleagues at WCPARC, HWPI, our partners, and the community is invaluable. It is wonderful to be part of a team of dedicated people who are helping to make this project a reality!”

Thank you, Peter, for your tireless dedication to creating this amazing trail that provides access to the outdoors and builds community across Washtenaw County.

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HWPI 2020 Year-End Report

What a year it has been! COVID-19 has brought unimaginable changes to every aspect of our lives. At a time when so many things are unpredictable, recreational trails have been a constant companion, offering respite and access to the outdoors. The community turned to the Border-to-Border (B2B) Trail in record numbers this year for recreation, commuting, and access to nature, demonstrating the trails are an essential community asset that enriches our lives in good times and in challenging times.

In 2020 alone, we have the following successes:

  • Over 5 miles of the B2B was built on six different B2B segments across Washtenaw County, stretching from Lyndon Township to Ypsilanti.
  • The first dedicated B2B trailhead was constructed and now features restrooms, picnic tables, a pollinator garden, and other amenities.
  • A tunnel was built under M-52 to replace an at-grade crossing, providing safe passage between the Waterloo and Pinckney Recreation Areas.

Click here to view the entire Year-End Report.

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Grove Road/North Hydro Park Ribbon Cutting

We are excited to announce that two new B2B Trail segments in Ypsilanti Township are officially open! These include the North Grove Road and North Hydro Park trail segments. We celebrate not only this new progress, but also that the Border-to-Border Trail has officially reached the eastern border of Washtenaw County!

Ypsilanti Township Supervisor, Brenda Stumbo, and Residential Services Director, Michael Hoffmeister joined trail partners, Washtenaw County Parks & Recreation Commission and Huron Waterloo Pathways Initiative, to safely mark the occasion and cut the ribbon to officially open the trail.

We look forward to additional trail openings later this fall on the South Grove Road and Frog Island Park segments in the City of Ypsilanti.

l-r: Jeff Hardcastle (HWPI), Peter Sanderson (WCPARC), Coy Vaughn (WCPARC), Brenda Stumbo (Ypsilanti Township), Roy Townsend (WCPARC), Michael Hoffmeister (Ypsilanti Township), Mackenzie Wisniewski (HWPI)

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B2B Trail Construction Updates

Zeeb Road to Delhi Metropark – This trail segment is the first of a two-part project that will extend the #B2BTrail an additional 1.8 miles. When the project is finished, it will complete 4 miles of continuous trail from Dexter to Ann Arbor!

Construction on this first section started in mid-September with its completion anticipated in mid-November. This project not only includes paving the new pathway, but also moving Skip’s Huron River Canoe Livery to a new location within Delhi Metropark to accommodate the extension of the trail.

The second section of this project will add just under a mile, extending the trail from Zeeb Road to East Delhi Road. Tree work will begin this winter. We hope to celebrate the official opening of this trail segment with partners, Huron-Clinton Metroparks and Washtenaw County Parks & Recreation Commission in the summer of 2021.

Frog Island and South Grove Trail Projects / City of Ypsilanti – Construction on the South Grove Road segment has almost wrapped up with concrete trail, intersection sidewalk ramps and driveway work complete. Only a portion of the restoration work remains to finish this project. On Frog Island, most of the concrete work is complete at the Cross Street end of the trail. Paving will continue with an anticipated project completion date in early November.

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