Ausable Township

What is the purpose or goal of the project?

McCuaig Park is an under-utilized asset in AuSable Township. AuSable Township wants to create a multi-use park that can be used by local residents, tourists and visitors of all ages and abilities. The multi-use park will include the following features: A 10-foot wide  one mile long paved walking/jogging/biking/wheelchair path around the perimeter of the park with  two multi-use courts that include lines painted for a regulation size basketball court, a regulation size tennis court and a regulation size pickleball court, an off-leash dog park, an all-inclusive ADA compliant playground, two renovated softball/baseball fields, lighting, security cameras and  an ADA accessible vault restroom.

AuSable Township wants to provide a safe place where residents can recreate year-round. The dog park and the multi-use path will be open year-round. The walking/jogging/biking/wheelchair path will be maintained by the township’s Department of Public Works (DPW) year-round.  The park can also be used for cross country skiing in the winter.

We will be upgrading existing lighting and installing a new security system that can be monitored by telephone or computers.

Construction will include removal of trees around the perimeter and through a section of the park to create and pave the figure 8  walking/jogging/biking/wheelchair path, paving a parking lot that provides accessibility to the playground, dog park and path, fencing the dog park, demolition, removal and replacement of the tennis courts; putting in two multi-purpose courts, and improving the ball fields. Accessible playground equipment and ADA compliant ground cover for the playground will be purchased with grant funds.

The walking/biking/wheelchair path will be 10 feet wide, with cross-slopes under 2% and running slopes under 5%. The path will have a surface of either concrete or asphalt. The path will include benches every .25 miles as resting stations, and provide easy access to restrooms and drinking fountains.

The playground will have both ramp and transfer access to all play components. The flooring for the playground will be poured-in-place rubber. The playground will include a deck transfer platform with one open transfer side and one side with transfer steps to every entry/exit point of every climber, so kids climbing up can get down to the deck to move to another component. The playground will also include a good variety of things to manipulate that make noise or music, include high contrast/bright colors, games that two kids can play, and Braille and sign language panels. The play panels will be easy to operate with just one hand with a whole fist and will not require tight/pinch/grasp/wrist twist to operate. There will be high contrast colors for decks versus transfers so kids with low vision can perceive a change in level. Play panels will be located at heights so they can be used from a seated position or standing.

For many seniors or people with disabilities in AuSable Township, their dog is their loyal companion. The dog park will include a latching gate into an entry and then a second gate into the dog park to ensure that dogs can’t escape. The dog park will be fenced. To meet universal design requirements, the dog park will have wider gates to accommodate someone in a larger outdoor wheelchair (or someone pushing a stroller). The gate will have a one hand operable latch mechanism located at a height that is easily reachable from a seated position. There will be wider accessible perimeter paths into all dog run areas with level transitions into the run area for pets. The pet waste clean-up dispensers will be reachable from a seated or standing position and by children.

Both sides of the multi-use courts will be accessible by wheelchair.  Wider gate openings will accommodate wider sports wheelchairs.

The parking area will be paved to provide easy access over a flat, solid surface to the playground, dog park, path and restrooms. There will be 8 parking spaces, including 2 ADA compliant, accessible paved parking spaces. The accessible parking spots will be paved, striped and signed and will provide direct access to the park elements.

The vault toilet will be a unisex/single user toilet room/unit so opposite sex care givers can provide assistance. The rest room will be located near the playground, dog park and parking lot.

Two drinking fountains, located near the rest room, will meet accessibility guidelines.

Phase 2 of the project includes an outdoor skating rink, creating exercise stations, and purchasing exercise equipment for the exercise stations.