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Beckett & Raeder, Inc. was retained by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) to provide design and engineering services for an Access to Recreation project at Waterloo State Recreation Area, near Chelsea, Michigan. The Access to Recreation program encourages universal design, going above and beyond the Americans with Disabilities Act, to promote increased recreational access to people with disabilities through design solutions that accommodate people of all ability levels.


The project entailed replacement of a long-derelict floating fishing pier along Crooked Lake, a popular destination for anglers in Washtenaw County. To further improve accessibility, the project included the construction of paved barrier-free parking, placement of picnic tables and grills, and a gravel path connecting these amenities, as well as an existing vault toilet. To further enhance the fishing experience, the project required placement of fish habitat bundles near the fishing pier.


Though a simple project, the design addresses users' needs while also providing ease of maintenance for MDNR staff. The pier is a popular destination for park users, both for fishing and picnicking and lake observation. The project was successfully completed within a tight time frame and budget utilizing remaining Access to Recreation funding prior to the program’s expiration.

Waterloo Trail & Fishing Pier 
Chelsea, Michigan

2016 Landscape Architectural Sustainability Honor Award

Michigan Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects

2013 Great Lakes Park, Facility, & Recreation Program Award
Great Lakes Park Trailing Institute
2012 Oak Land Award
Oakland County
2011 Landscape Design Award
Michigan Recreation & Park Association
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