Brown Bridge Quiet Area Management Plan
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Brown Bridge Advisory Committee
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SubjectBrown Bridge Quiet Area; wetland flora; upland flora; plant and natural community classification; natural quality evaluation of the area; management recommendations for proper stewardship of any sensitive natural resources identified; City of Traverse City; Traverse Bay Watershed Center
This Brown Bridge Management Plan is the compilation of several efforts over the years including a Site Inventory and Evaluation (1975) conducted by George Ferrar, Resource Conservation & Development (RC&D); a Critical Area Treatment Plan (1988) drawn up by Tom Adams, District Conservationist, Soil Conservation Service (SCS); and a Natural Area Evaluation and Wetland Floristic Inventory (1991), by Gary Reese, Ecologist, Midwest Biosurveys. In addition, the general public and a citizen based Brown Bridge Advisory Committee have had extensive input in the development of this plan. Two other forest management plans were written for Brown Bridge by Pere Marquette State foresters in 1953 and 1963. Both plans focused on the consumptive value of harvesting timber off the property and lacked an integrated management view.On April 4,1977 the citizens of Traverse City approved a ballot proposal to allow drilling for oil & gas on the Brown Bridge property. As we all know, the City did drill and strike oil. To date, the gas & oil revenue from the four City-owned wells at Brown Bridge has placed approximately six million dollars into the Brown Bridge Trust Fund. Annually, the trust fund generates close to a half million dollars (over 2.5 mills) in interest revenue; the revenue is then placed into the General Fund to offset taxes and fund City-wide operations. A month prior, the City Commission passed a resolution dedicating Brown Bridge as a "Natural Area for Quiet Recreation" (Appendix ****). The resolution also stated the City's intent to appoint a citizen based Brown Bridge Management Plan Committee.