Protection and wise use of the Boardman River Watershed are at the core of a prosperity plan now being developed across the 291 sq. mile watershed.
A leadership team comprised of 12 Grand Traverse/Kalkaska county regional organizations, has tasked its consulting partners, led by Public Sector Consultants of Lansing, Michigan, with developing a new approach to natural resource planning in light of dam removal and the Boardman’s return to a free flowing river.
This approach will reflect the economic and community development of the unique watershed; focus on its long term protection; and address issues of business and job creation.
Two catalysts for developing the watershed prosperity plan strategy were the extensive public process that led to the decision by Traverse City and Grand Traverse County to remove three dams on the Boardman, while modifying a fourth dam; and the six-county regional citizen-led Grand Vision planning effort.
The new strategic blueprint will take into account an inventory of natural and economic development assets; identification of watershed priorities; definition of current gaps that may impede goal achievement; keying on best practices that support quality of life and economic well being in the watershed; and integration of strategies developed from the region’s Grand Vision process, Traverse City and Kalkaska Downtown Development Authorities and Grand Traverse/Kalkaska County economic development planning.
Rotary Charities of Traverse City and the Great Lakes Fishery Trust have provided funding for development of the prosperity plan.
Members of the BRWPP Leadership Team include:
- Watershed Center – Grand Traverse Bay
- Grand Traverse Conservation District
- Traverse Area Chamber of Commerce
- Traverse City Downtown Development Authority
- Kalkaska Downtown Development Authority
- Charter Township of Garfield
- Traverse Area Association of Realtors
- Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy
- Rotary Camps and Services
- Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians - Natural Resources Department
- Conservation Resource Alliance
- Traverse City Convention and Visitors Bureau
- DTE Energy