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Shoreline solutions and suggestions: Climate health and adaptation report released for Teal Lake

At top left, area residents lay out blankets and set up lawn chairs along the shore of Teal Lake in anticipation for the fireworks display during 2018’s Pioneer Days. This is just one example of the many recreational activities that occur at Teal Lake. Implementing guidance from the recently completed Teal Lake Shoreline Climate and Health Adaptation Vision Study could offer improved recreational opportunities at the popular destination while mitigating harmful impacts of stormwater runoff, city officials say. (Journal file photo)

NEGAUNEE — Implementing guidance from the recently completed Teal Lake Shoreline Climate and Health Adaptation Vision Study could offer improved recreational opportunities at the popular destination while mitigating harmful impacts of stormwater runoff, city officials say.

The study stems from the Marquette Area Climate and Health Adaptation Action Grant, which was awarded to the city of Negaunee and Marquette Township to help the municipalities address health-related climate concerns.

This grant is being used to implement guidance from Marquette Area Climate and Health Adaptation Plan, which was developed over several years with community input.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the Michigan State University School of Planning, Design and Construction — a long-time collaborator on the Marquette Area Climate and Health Adaptation Plan — was able to gather information and community feedback regarding the shoreline via three public-input sessions.

Through the public input sessions, four major themes were developed: placemaking, connectivity, accessibility and beautification.

Sisters Irene, left, and Annabella Neumeier of Escanaba smile after finishing the Swim Teal Lake Benefit for Diabetes's Short-n-Sweet event held in Negaunee on July 25 Annabella took first place while Irene finished second. This is just one example of the many recreational activities that occur at Teal Lake. Implementing guidance from the recently completed Teal Lake Shoreline Climate and Health Adaptation Vision Study could offer improved recreational opportunities at the popular destination while mitigating harmful impacts of stormwater runoff, city officials say. (Journal file photo)

The process revealed seven suggested areas where the themes can be applied: the waterworks building and the surrounding parking lot and green space, the Teal Lake Beach, the Croix Street overlook at the school parking lot between Lakeview and Birch streets, the Lakeview Elementary School parking lot and other areas of Croix and Birch streets.

The proposed improvements draw from community feedback while addressing some of the larger climate and health concerns of Marquette County, the study states.

Recommendations for the waterworks building, associated parking and green space include adding a gazebo, seating, lighting and a rain garden, as well as promoting increased walkability of the site and adding a bike path running parallel with the sidewalk along North Croix Street, according to the study’s final report.

The recommendations for the Teal Lake Beach area include adding stone wave breakers along portions of the shoreline, creating beach access from Croix Street with an Americans With Disabilities Act-compliant access mat and rerouting the drainage system coming from the street above.

The pilot MACHA grant, which was made available through the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the Michigan Climate and Health Adaptation Program and MSU Extension, provided Negaunee residents and business owners with a set of images and recommendations to guide adaptation improvements.

From left, then-Northern Michigan University varsity rowers Maddy Joslyn, Ruth Gleson, Rebecca Sutherland, Maria Paparella and Allison Fran row to the starting line during the 14th annual Iron Oars Regatta at Teal Lake in Negaunee.This is just one example of the many recreational activities that occur at Teal Lake. Implementing guidance from the recently completed Teal Lake Shoreline Climate and Health Adaptation Vision Study could offer improved recreational opportunities at the popular destination while mitigating harmful impacts of stormwater runoff, city officials say. (Journal file photo)

The report was also reviewed by a steering committee made up of Negaunee City Manager Nate Heffron, Planning and Zoning Administrator David Nelson, Negaunee Public Schools Superintendent Dan Skewis and Negaunee residents Dave Dompierre and Jon Becker.

“I want to thank all of our city staff, residents and partners associated with this project for all of their hard work and dedication in bringing new and exciting opportunities to the Teal Lake shoreline,” Heffron said in a press release. “Now is the time to look how we can apply these ideas to provide better access to Teal Lake while respecting the environment and maintaining our community character.”

Lisa Bowers can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 242. Her email address is lbowers@miningjournal.net.

Jared Augustine and Alex Burns, both of Marquette, brave the wind during a past Teal Lake Ice Fishing Derby. This is just one example of the many recreational activities that occur at Teal Lake. Implementing guidance from the recently completed Teal Lake Shoreline Climate and Health Adaptation Vision Study could offer improved recreational opportunities at the popular destination while mitigating harmful impacts of stormwater runoff, city officials say. (Journal file photo)

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