Detroit City Council session to decide on Belle Isle lease - FOX 32 News Chicago

Detroit City Council session to decide on Belle Isle lease

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DETROIT -

The Detroit City Council is expected to discuss a lease deal for the Frederic Olmsted-designed 985-acre Belle Isle park in the middle of the Detroit River.

A special council session is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. at City Hall. State-appointed emergency manager Kevyn Orr and Gov. Rick Snyder signed a 30-year lease on Oct. 1 that would make Belle Isle a state park.

The question before council: To lease or not to lease?

The fate of the 985 acre gem right in the middle of the Detroit River  has been up for debate for months. Governor Rick Snyder and Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr approved a 30-year lease back at the beginning of the moth that would turn Belle Isle into a state park. Now, it's the city council's chance to chime in.

Aaron Mainor-lives in Detroit: "I just wish they'd stop the bickering and a make a decision. If you make it a state park I'll pay for it. We pay at the others why not this one?"

The leasing of Belle Isle is expected to save the cash strapped city of Detroit about $6 million a year. The cost to you, an annual admission fee of 11 bucks. In return the state would invest anywhere from $10 to $20 million in the popular park.

Arthur Reid-lives in Hamtramck: "I just want it to stay clean and for the snow to be removed. If it takes it to be a state park to make that happen or Detroit charges to do it, I don't mind. I just want to walk"

It's a park that's become part of a morning ritual for those who can't help but relish in its beauty. No matter what happens they just want to keep it that way.

Marie Crews visits Belle Isle Daily:" As long as the fee isn't astronomical I'm okay with it. Maybe it will help bring it back to its hey day."

The city council is expected to talk about the issue at a meeting at 3pm. If they decide to reject the lease option, they have 7 days to come up with an alternative plan.

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