Village council OKs future Ridge Road pathway

By David Fleet
Goodrich-On Nov. 12, by a 5-0 vote the village council OK’d the scoping/pre-engineering of a pathway between Ridge Road from Hegel to Green roads. The procedure must be completed before any applications are made for grant funding.
“This is at no cost to the village,” said Paulette Johnson, Walk, Bike, Run, committee co-chair. “It would increase the safety, health and sense of community for the village residents and all residents in (Atlas) township.”
The scoping/pre engineering along about a mile of roadway that meanders near the village mill pond and Goodrich County Club should begin in the spring of 2019 following the bidding process.
The ‘Walk, Bike, Run Atlas Township committee was formed in 2013 and gathered 358 signed petitions from residents in support of recreational paths in Atlas Township. The funds, for the scoping/pre-engineering project of Ridge Road will come from the recreational pathways fund. Revenue is generated by a millage of .125 or $6.25 per year taxable value $100,000 first approved by voters in November 2014 and then renewed earlier this year. Last month there was $129,000 in the trail fund which grows at a rate of about $40,000 per year.
“It’s really important,” said Doug McAbee, council member. “We’ve needed a sidewalk or path along that section for a long time.”
Johnson added the Walk, Bike, Run committee strives to incorporate the schools into the project.
“In the past the schools have supported Safe Routes to School efforts,” added Johnson. “As much help as we can give them monetarily. The schools have to take the largest interest in this process. Ridge Road is one of our priorities.”
The Safe Routes to School is an international movement—and now a federal program—to make it safe, convenient, and fun for children, including those with disabilities, to bicycle and walk to school. When routes are safe, walking or biking to and from school is an easy way to get the regular physical activity children need for good health.