7:00 P.M.



MEMBERS PRESENT:                        Lengerman, Rothhaar, Peck, Donovan, Berthiaume, Robert, Zimmer-Janeczko


MEMBERS ABSENT:                         Lincoln (excused)


OTHERS PRESENT:                            M. McGuire, Director of Public Services


The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. by Chairperson Bruce Peck.




Motion by Rothhaar, seconded by Lengerman to receive the minutes of the meeting of November 11, 2003.  Motion carried 7 – 0.


Call to Audience


Chairperson Peck issued a call to the audience for discussion of items not on the agenda.  There was no response.


Chippewa Nature Center Trail Proposal


In November, 2000, officials of the Chippewa Nature Center approached the Commission with the concept of a trail from the Tridge to the Nature Center.  The Commission endorsed a study of the project and requested that the Nature Center representatives report back before any implementation.


In February, 2003, Nature Center representatives presented a proposed routing to the Commission.  The Commission approved a resolution to recommend to the City Council that the project to construct a path from the Tridge to the Nature Center be endorsed at no capital cost to the City, that the City commit to owning and maintaining the portion of the trail within the City and that the project be included in the upcoming Parks Master Plan.


On March 24, 2003, City Council gave conceptual approval to the project and committed to providing maintenance services on the trail that is within the City.


Dick Touvel and Steve Kin addressed the Commission on the issue.  They described changes in the route which brings it closer to Parks & Recreation Facilities and asked that the City become a partner in the project to the extent of applying for state and federal grants for the portion on city land.  Commissioner Lengerman questioned the surface and width and was told that it would be asphalt and 12’ wide.  Peck questioned the schedule.  Kin indicated a grant request would be made in April 2004, and construction in 2005.  Rothhaar praised the project as opening up the Whitman area for recreation.


Motion by Rothhaar, seconded by Lengerman to recommend to City Council that they endorse the newly proposed trail and that the Commission include the concept in the upcoming Master Plan discussions.  Motion carried 7 – 0.


Master Plan Update


Rob Eggers and Alan Bean of Spicer Engineering reported on the Community workshop and survey, both of which were conducted to gather public input for the Master Plan.  They indicated that the response rate was excellent.  1000 surveys were sent out, fifty were returned as undeliverable and 435 responses were received.  Nearly fifty people attended the workshop (see attached report).


The commission set a special meeting for January 13, 2004 to discuss Master Plan Goals.


Project Update


McGuire reported that the City Council had received the Commission’s recommendation on the Civic Arena and had scheduled a public hearing for January 12, 2004.


McGuire informed the Commission that staff had worked with the Midland Area Community Foundation for funding and was successful in having Midland named as one of 20+ stops on the U.S. Olympic Softball Team’s Aiming for Athens tour as they prepare for the 2004 Olympics.  The team will play two games in Midland on July 4th in the afternoon.


Old Business


Lengerman asked if the seat opened by the death of Esther Gerstacker would be filled now or with the seats in the spring.


New Business


The Commission asked that a special meeting be arranged between the City Council and the Commission to discuss fee philosophy.


Meeting adjourned at 8:05 p.m.


Respectfully submitted,




Marty McGuire