Residents upset proposed trail will go through yards - WNEM TV 5

Residents upset proposed trail will go through yards

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)
SAGINAW COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -

Tittabawassee Township officials approved a grant proposal during a recent board of trustees meeting that would allow a two-and-a-half-mile trail to be constructed through the yard of residents.

“When it hits you it’s a shockwave. A boulder in still water. And it’s great, but not in your yard,” said Tom Zemanek, resident.

Zemanek loves his yard. He has worked tirelessly on the landscape since 1999.

“We love the beauty. We love the elegance,” he said.

He found out from a neighbor the township is planning to build a rail trail through his front yard. It would connect the Freeland and Kochville Township trails, but he will probably lose his trees.

“One would never have thought something like this would even come along. Never in my wildest dreams. And to hear from a neighbor. Come on. I mean, gee whiz. Where’s the line of communication,” Zemanek said.

Tittabawassee Township Supervisor Rick Hayes said in a township meeting residents had been mailed letters.

“Nobody got a letter. I didn’t get a letter. I’m close with my neighbor,” Zemanek said. “Nobody got a letter.”

His family and his neighbors are upset they don’t have much of a say. The property near the road belongs to the county.

“What I’m against is infringing on people’s rights. That’s our front yard,” said Catherine Zemanek, resident.

Hayes said the project is still a way’s away. They’ve only asked for a grant from the DNR so far and said the township is willing to try some compromises, like making the trail look more like a sidewalk.

Tom Zemanek said he thinks it would be a better idea to build utility trails from Freeland Sports Zone to Kochville instead of his yard.

“I’m gonna try to welcome this. What else have I,” he said.

The next step is for the grant to be approved and that could take some time.

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