Projects

The majority of the FRCA’s work occurs in partnership with other organizations and the residents of Flint, and varies year to year based on the needs and opportunities in the community. Here’s what we’re up to now:

Flint River Flotilla

The Flint River Flotilla is our annual floating party on the river, which happens the first Saturday in August. Folks gather with a boat or flotation device of their choosing for a leisurely 2.25 mile journey from Grand Traverse Street to the Paddlers Landing at Mott Park Recreation Area in Flint. Participants play music, wear costumes, and generally have a great time on the water, all in support of the projects we do in and around the river system in Flint. Since 2014, more than 1,300 people have experienced the Flint River through the all-ages, all-abilities Flotilla. It may look like fun and games, but events like the Flint River Flotilla do the real work of building relationships between residents and their river, so that they’ll enjoy it and protect it for years to come.

Enjoy this great article from East Village Magazine about the 2019 Flint River Flotilla while you count down the days until this year’s Flotilla.

The 2022 Flint River Flotilla is scheduled for Saturday, August 6th, 2022. Check back in early summer for more info.

Love Your Lakes

People kayaking in a lake with an island in the background.

Love Your Lakes is a project started by our parent organization, the Flint River Watershed Coalition (FRWC), that since 2018 has been coordinated by the Corridor Alliance. We are working at two of the lakes within the city of Flint, Flint Park Lake (aka Devil’s Lake), and Thread Lake, to support residents’ visions for their lakes. Projects include property owner engagement, neighborhood lake celebrations, supporting local neighborhood associations in pursuing resident-led projects, and since 2021, participating in water quality and habitat monitoring through the MiCorps Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program.

Water quality data gathered through the Cooperative Lakes Monitoring Program can be found here.

Marcel & Jordan LYL Milkweed Planting at Flint Park Lake

Our work is based on the comprehensive community-driven lake visions developed by residents, Michigan State University, and the FRWC, which can be found here:

A Vision for Flint Park Lake (2014)

A Vision for Thread Lake (2014)

If you are interested in supporting our work at Flint’s lakes or volunteering on lake projects, contact Sarah Scheitler at sscheitler@flintriver.org.

Kayak Flint

Paddle on the Flint River through Mott Park Recreation Area

Kayak Flint is co-managed by the Corridor Alliance and the FRWC. The kayak rental project launched in fall 2018 with great success. Located behind Tenacity Brewing at 119 N. Grand Traverse, Kayak Flint is directly on the Flint River and provides kayak rentals and shuttling to make your adventure on the Flint River as easy and enjoyable as possible. The paddling season runs from May-October. FRWC staff also offer guided kayak tours across the Flint River, as well as iKayak classes for those with mobility issues or disabilities, private trips, and more. Book your rental or guided paddle today!

Kayaking the Flint River past Chevy Commons and Atwood Stadium.

Flint River Access

The Paddlers' Landing at Mott Park Rec Area newly finished

The Corridor Alliance worked closely with the Mott Park Recreation Association to plan, fund, and construct the Paddlers’ Landing at Mott Park Recreation Area, off of Sunset Dr. just east of Ballenger Hwy. The landing was completed in fall of 2019 with donations crowdfunded from many individuals and local institutions and businesses, and matched by the MEDC through their Public Spaces, Community Places program. Plans are still in process for parking and drop-off area improvements. The landing is ADA-accessible through its transfer seat and steps, and is open to the public for launching kayaks or canoes, fishing, or just enjoying the river.

Launch with Kayak Chute on the Swartz Creek.

A stone launch into the Swartz Creek at Island St. was constructed in 2021 by Genesee County Parks as part of an EPA-funded stormwater mitigation and green infrastructure project. The FRWC and Corridor Alliance are also working on access and grounds improvements at this site, which borders the confluence of the Swartz Creek and Flint River just off of Kearsley St. The building on the property is the future home of the FRWC, Corridor Alliance, and Kayak Flint, and the grounds and launches will be open to the public.

Flint River National Water Trail

Flint River Water Trail Map Overview

There are 27 public access sites along the 73-mile Flint River National Water Trail. The water trail provide paddlers with a variety of paddling opportunities and experiences. You can paddle in natural environments, and through small towns or an urban area from the City of Lapeer to Montrose Township (includes portages around dams)! We offer a number of opportunities of varying distance and time to get out on YOUR river.

The FRWC and Corridor Alliance manage the Flint River Water Trail partnership, which includes Genesee County Parks, and the Genesee County Metropolitan Planning Commission. The Flint River Water Trail received National Water Trail designation in fall of 2020. We work to increase access to the trail through development of launches, maps for navigation, and obstruction clearing. We are also working on marketing the trail to new users across the county and state. Check out the links below for Flint River Water Trail resources:

Flint River Water Trail Guide (PDF) – Available in paper (free) or waterproof ($5) printed versions – contact sscheitler@flintriver.org to get a physical copy.

Interactive Flint River Water Trail Map (Google Maps)

Virtual Flint River Water Trail Tour (Terrain 360) – This is like Google Street View, except on the river!

Engagement, Advocacy, & Consulting

Flint-Riverfront-Restoration-Project-Downstream-Stretch

The Flint Riverfront Restoration Project was originally created in 2010 to develop a vision to transform the Flint Riverfront from a neglected resource into a healthy and vibrant community asset. The vision calls for the rejuvenation of the river and riverfront through the creation of water-based recreational opportunities, park improvements, underutilized property redevelopment, enhanced community connectivity, ecosystem restoration, and improved stormwater/flood control. The Corridor Alliance was a leader in the development of the project, and now serves in an advisory capacity, while Genesee County Parks and the City of Flint oversee project management. 

The superstructures of the Hamilton Dam and Fabre Dam were removed in spring of 2018, leaving weirs remaining at the two sites. Stormwater outfalls to the river were rebuilt or restored throughout the city as the second phase of this project. Design and permitting work are being finalized now before further in-stream work will begin. Restoration and improvements to Riverbank Park and Vietnam Veterans Park will be the final step in the project. Find full information and project updates here at https://geneseecountyparks.org/flint-river-restoration-project/.

Flint-Riverfront-Restoration-Project-Full-Scope

Chevy Commons: The Corridor Alliance was also a leader in the plans for remediation and redevelopment of the 130-acre brownfield property adjacent to downtown Flint and surrounded by residential neighborhoods, formerly known as Chevy in the Hole . The property was a key center of manufacturing for General Motors for most of the past century. The environmental remediation, capping, and park development at the site was managed by the Genesee County Land Bank and was officially completed in 2021. The park is open to the public for active and passive recreation on its miles of trails among native plantings. Chevy Commons was purchased from the City of Flint by Genesee County in 2021, and is now part of the Genesee County Parks system. Also in 2021, plans were announced by Governor Gretchen Whitmer to establish Chevy Commons as Genesee County’s first state park. Plans remain in the development stage. The Corridor Alliance is serving in an advisory capacity on the further development of the park. 

Cycling Circles 2017 at Chevy Commons

By