Current Planning Projects

Continuing Projects and Initiatives
Updated February 2024

Beach District
With funding from two federal grants, the Planning & Zoning Department has kicked off a community visioning process to develop an implementable vision for public investments and revitalization of a section of the U.S. 31 corridor in East Bay Township (The East Bay Beach District). The Township Board of Trustees selected Beckett & Raeder Inc as the consultant to facilitate the vision process over the next several months.  The consultant will facilitate stakeholder and community engagement sessions, develop conceptual design renderings for public infrastructure improvements and advise on the engineering feasibility of these improvements, and work with willing property owners to develop a vision for two to three (2-3) sites that could be redeveloped to maximize mixed use opportunities and offer quasi-public “third” spaces and placemaking amenities. Township staff kicked off quarterly meetings with business owners and residents along the Beach District in July 2023 to provide an opportunity for community engagement, knowledge sharing, and economic development. Please see the East Bay Township Beach District Community Visioning website to learn more about the process so far, find opportunities for future engagement, and to sign up to receive updates.  An Implementation Team was created including various business owners, residents and community partners to help create a plan to implementing the vision for the Beach District. You can also find the new Beach District Business Directory at the link provided. 

District created during this process. Zoning Ordinance Rewrite
The East Bay Township Board of Trustees approved the 2023 Master Plan at their January 3, 2023 meeting.  The Township has contracted with the planning firm Giffels Webster to facilitate the zoning ordinance rewrite. This process officially kicked off in November 2022. A subcommittee of board and commission representatives, Township staff, and legal counsel met bimonthly with the consultant team over 15 months on the ordinance update.  The draft ordinance will be reviewed in chunks by the Planning Commission over the next few months on March 19, April 16, & May 21 at 6:30pm at the Township Hall. Upon approval it will go to the Board of Trustees for review. 

Three Mile Trail
The conceptual plan for the Three Mile Trail Extension was launched in the summer of 2020 by TART Trails, East Bay Township, the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy, and Norte Youth Cycling. Project partners have engaged the public through outdoor and online input opportunities during the fall of 2020, winter, and spring of 2021. In August 2021, the East Bay Township Board of Trustees approved a conceptual alignment for the future trail expansion.  
OHM Advisors kick-offed design engineering for the Three Mile Trail extension in September 2022. The new Three Mile Trail will extend from its current terminus at Three Mile and South Airport Road, cross through the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy’s Mitchell Creek Meadows Nature Preserve and connect users to the planned safe routes pathway on Hammond Road. Adjacent property owners have been actively engaged and in a number of cases are donating trail easements. TART Trail has more information on their website. Learn more here.

Safe Routes to School
As part of the Safe Routes to School initiative, East Bay Township is seeking to improve pedestrian access to area schools in the vicinity of the 3 Mile Road and Hammond intersection, while also furthering the enhancement of regional trail connectivity. The Township has received conditional commitment from the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) for $1.2 million worth of walking and biking infrastructure improvements, as well as programming to support the investment at each of the local schools.  Prein & Newhof is kicking off the first phase of engineering design for the Safe Routes to School sidewalks and pathways, which will connect four Township schools with safe walking and biking infrastructure – Cherry Knoll Elementary, Grand Traverse Academy, East Middle School, and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Middle School.  This project is supported by our partner at TART, the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy, and Norte.  

Hammond Road  
The East-West Corridor Transportation Study, authorized by the Grand Traverse County Road Commissionanalyzed and provided recommendations for the current transportation network connecting the Grand Traverse region. Included in the study’s recommendations were improvements for select high-traffic intersections within East Bay Township. East Bay Township worked closely with partners at the Road Commission to develop a new roundabout at 4 Mile and Hammond Road with the inclusion of community-focused infrastructure, including elements such as safe pedestrian crossings, pedestrian scale street slighting, landscaping, and other placemaking additions. Moving forward, the Township will continue to engage with Garfield Charter Township and the Road Commission to develop corridor improvements that support multimodal transportation options, placemaking, and support implementation of the Township's future land use vision. 

Holiday Woodlands Natural Area
In December 2019, East Bay Township was awarded a grant from the Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund to acquire and expand the Holiday Woodlands Preserve as a public natural area, to be known as the Holiday Woodlands Natural Area. In July 2022, the Township officially closed on the property. The Holiday Woodlands Natural Area incorporates the 80-acre preserve with an additional 65 acres adjacent to Mt. Holiday. East Bay Township is proud to partner with the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy, which has dedicated matching funds, and Mt. Holiday, which has agreed to handle maintenance duties of the new natural area. The next steps for the project will be to form subcommittees and gather public feedback to establish the community’s vision and goals.