Staebler Farm Red Barns
Barnyard at Staebler Farm

Staebler Farm County Park Development Updates

It has been a few months since we have provided an update on the development of Staebler Farm County Park.  We wanted to let you know that we haven’t forgotten about you!  Read on to learn about what's happening at the park.

Forge Hammer

The Michigan Folk School

Progress on the park has been moving along swiftly.  As previously stated, Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission (WCPARC) issued a formal Request for Proposal in the summer of 2016 to seek a partner to assist with park operations.  This winter, the Parks and Recreation Commission finalized a lease agreement with The Michigan Folk School (MFS)—a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation—to establish their campus at the park.  In December, MFS completed an online fundraising campaign to assist with their first phase of the partnership.  In combination with a matching grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, more than $80,000 was raised to rehabilitate Donald Staebler’s workshop into a woodworking and blacksmith studio.  Plans for the structure are being finalized, and contractors are being selected to complete the work.  This summer, expect to see crews updating the building for its planned use.

white chicken coop

Farmhouse & Chicken Coop Repairs

Another exciting development is the repair and stabilization of the farmhouse and chicken coop.  Over the years, some building elements, such as the farmhouse windows, chicken coop roof, and brick and stone mortar joints, have deteriorated.  In an effort to prevent further decline of the structures and preserve the house until a formal plan for its use has been developed, WCPARC worked with an architect to draft preservation plans and has solicited bids from contractors to complete this necessary work.  We hope to have a construction company under contract in June so this work can occur during summer months.  We anticipate this project to be completed by this fall.

still water pond

Site Plan Development

Finally, this spring, staff began working with ROWE Professional Services to develop a detailed plan for the site.  Last month, the consultants prepared a topographic survey of the property.  In the coming weeks, you may notice an excavator digging holes for soil investigations.  All this work is done to help determine the placement of parking lots, stormwater detention basins, septic fields, and other site elements.  Once the due diligence is complete, the consultant team will begin preparing the detailed site plan.  You will have the opportunity to comment on the draft plan at a future public Superior Township meeting (date to be determined).  We will inform you once a date has been selected.
For additional information about the park's development, please contact Park Planner Kira Macyda at [email protected].

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