Noque Trail Network gets approval for pavilion

The Noquemanon Trail Network now has the approval to construct a pavilion on property off M-553 in Marquette County.

The Marquette City Commission approved a license agreement to the NTN at its meeting Monday night.

The agreement would allow the NTN to continue to the use the city-owned property, but front the costs for building and maintaining a structure.  It would be built at the NTN Trailhead on the Heartwood Forest Property.

“We see this as a mutual project.  They’re (the NTN) providing a service, and we (the commission) want to work with them on it,” City Commissioner Don Ryan said.  “This (the licensing agreement) will just really allow them to enhance what’s there, make a better trailhead facility, and it’s a way that the city continues to hold ownership.”

Even though the license was approved, Commissioner Sarah Cambensy thought there were too many unanswered questions, including funding, and voted no.

“I don’t think you’re going to find anyone who will disagree that we don’t want this pavilion, but I think it needs to be done right.  And I think it’s an integral part of what we’re starting to plan for this project,” Cambensy said.  “And I don’t think we’re there yet.  I think there’s a lot of (city) staff questions that came back in our packets tonight with some pretty big items that either haven’t been talked about.  They’re going to cause the city a lot of grey areas moving forward with the budgets and planning.”

“It’s a project we’ve been working on for a long time, and they (the NTN) originally asked if they could purchase the land to build it–that prompted a lot of discussion which didn’t get us where we wanted to be, so we finally came up with a plan where the city would grant them a license to use city land to proceed with it,” Ryan said.  “And this is really the final steps in the process.”

The NTN said it has raised about $30,000 dollars so far to fund the pavilion.