Maybury Park fundraiser gets closer to fund study of new entrance
Posted on 02/16/2021
Two young boys stand with their parents near the Maybury kiosk topped by the park's distinctive arched sign.The Friends of Maybury has raised more than $12,500 to fund an engineering study that will lay the groundwork for a new pedestrian/bicycle entrance off 7 Mile near Ridge Road. A new southern entrance for the 944-acre park was identified by area residents and stakeholders as a top priority in the 2019 General Management Plan.

The first step toward making this entrance a reality is to conduct an engineering study that will establish a route, conduct core samples, and generate design/engineering drawings. This study is expected to cost about $18,000.

There are currently two drive-in entrances to the park – the entrance to the horse-riding stables off Beck Road and the main entrance off 8 Mile. A convenient, accessible bicycle/pedestrian entrance was developed in 2015 at the northeast corner of the park that connects to the regional Link trail. That project, which involved making road improvements and new crossings, was funded by the DNR, Wayne County, local communities, Friends of Maybury and others.

The new entrance being proposed would especially benefit nearby residents, who could walk or ride bikes to the park. “The mountain-bike trail is in the southern quadrant of the park and it’s a huge draw. Many people who live on the south side of the park don’t want to put their bike on a rack and drive around to the 8 Mile entrance,” said Park Supervisor Traci Sincock.

“The bike path inside the park aligns with the paved trail so it would be easy to get to from the 7 Mile entrance.”

Friends of Maybury, an all-volunteer, non-profit organization, considers the southern entrance project important enough to raise money from the community. Wayne County, Northville Township and other stakeholders are on board with creating a new non-motorized entrance. While the new entrance would not connect to the Link trail initially, it could become part of a future bike path along 7 Mile and Ridge Road, per the Northville Township Pathways System plan.

“Through surveys and hearings, the new entrance at the southern border was the number one amenity that people wanted. There’s not a lot of money for capital improvements at this time, said Sincock. “The Friends of Maybury, knowing that, decided that they would tackle this project to keep it moving forward.”

The Friends of Maybury is two-thirds of the way toward raising its $18,000 goal, which began in October, 2020, according to the organization’s president, Chuck Murdock. Fundraising efforts have been supported through grants and by contributions from businesses and individuals. Three grants have been made: $2,500 from FACT (Federation of American Consumers & Travelers) and $1,000 each from the Northville Rotary Club and Community Financial Credit Union.

The nonprofit organization, which celebrates 25 years in 2021, provides approximately $10,000 annually for materials, projects and financial support to the Park. It also supports educational, environmental and cultural programs.

Maybury State Park is an oasis amid sprawling suburbia – serving Wayne County, Lyon Township, Oakland County and other communities farther out. An estimated 400,000 people live within a 10-mile range of the park. Many come for the trails – bicyclists, horseback riders, walkers and runners. Others gather for picnics and group events or simply to throw a frisbee or kick a soccer ball in the meadows surrounded by woods. In 2019, there were 500,000 visits; in 2020, during COVID-19, attendance spiked to nearly 1.2 million visits. More people are discovering the park and coming back frequently.

Paths in Maybury wind through a mature forest that served as a health care center and respite for adults and children with tuberculosis in the 1921 – 1969. At that time, there were approximately 40 buildings at the Maybury Sanatorium. Many housed patients and some staff, others were used to prepare food and store supplies. There was also a summer camp for kids with tuberculosis. With the discovery of penicillin, TB was cured and the sanatorium closed.

After the buildings were demolished, except for a few remaining, the City of Detroit sold the property to the State in 1971 to develop it into a park. Maybury State Park opened in 1975 as the first state park in Wayne County. Plaques set along the trails tell the park’s history. The distinctive wrought-iron arch for Maybury Sanatorium that crowned a trailhead has been relocated to the front of the new park headquarters, close to the 8 Mile entrance.

If you would like to contribute to the engineering study for the new entrance, send a check to the Friends of Maybury (49601 Eight Mile Rd, Northville, MI, 48167) or make a donation online at MightyCause.

About the map: The new entrance is proposed to be close to where Ridge Road terminates at 7 Mile (not shown on the map but midway between Napier and Beck). Map courtesy of Maybury State Park.Map of Maybury with trails marked in colors