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Getting to parks and trails without a car

I live in Detroit and don't own a car. It's difficult to access parks and trails for hiking/bicycling by public transit.

Photo of Adrian Laurenzi
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Michigan Central Station

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The area surrounding Detroit has many amazing parks that have hiking, water, and bicycling trails, however these amenities are very difficult to access without a car. The MetroParks system is great, but unfortunately it not really accessible by public transit. I live in the New Center area and Belle Isle is one of the only natural areas with trails that is accessible by public transit but it takes 1.5 hours one way to get there.

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Photo of Boratha Tan

Good afternoon Adrian Laurenzi , thanks for posting! I'm Boratha, part of the City:One Facilitation team. Thank you for sharing your experience with us. There have been some other posts here from community owned bike shares, to different services for "last mile transport". Do you have a specific idea that can help address your experience of mobility to & from New Center (to Belle Isle, Corktown/Roosevelt Park, Riverfront, etc.)?

Photo of Mackenzie Fankell

Adrian Laurenzi Hi Adrian! Thank you for your idea! What other parks you would like to visit that are not easily accessible in the Detroit area? I'd love to hear more!

Photo of Adrian Laurenzi

Hi Boratha Tan , yes I've been working on this issue for over 5 years in a variety of cities. My company TOTAGO (www.totago.co) is very much focused on this issue and we have been developing a trip planning tool that integrates a variety of multi-modal transportation options with park and trail information. We only have a small "demo" in the Detroit area so far but we have tens of thousands of users that use our app on the West coast (mostly in Washington state, southern CA, Vancouver BC and Oregon).

Photo of Adrian Laurenzi

Mackenzie Fankell Really as many parks as possible but to name a few others that I'd love to be able to access without the need to drive are: Pinckney Recreation Area and Island Lake Recreation Area. There are also lots of Mountain Biking areas some within the MetroParks and others not which I'd also really love to access (basically all those relatively close to Detroit listed here: https://www.mtbproject.com/directory/8011645/detroit-metro). For me I'm interested in places that have trails (for hiking and/or biking) or waterways to kayak/canoe and feel like an "escape from the city", and the easier they are to access the better.