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Press Release

Matt Bach, Director of Media Relations
Michigan Municipal League
(734) 669-6317;


South Haven Showcased for Community Excellence

Kal Haven Trail Extension and Williams Street Work Recognized at Statewide Conference

LANSING, Michigan – The city of South Haven was among 27 communities showcased on April 9 at the 2013 Michigan Municipal League Community Excellence Award (CEA) competition during the League’s 2013 Capital Conference in Lansing.

The city’s Kal Haven Trail Extension and Williams Street Reconstruction project was one of four presentations at the League’s Region 2 Roundtable, which includes all communities in the south-central and southwestern portions of the Lower Peninsula. The winning Region 2 entry was St. Joseph’s Silver Beach Development Project. The other Region 2 nominations were Albion’s Crowell School project; and the 3B’s Agri-Tourism Ignition effort jointly submitted by the communities of Bridgman, Baroda and Berrien Springs.

South Haven City Manager Brian Dissette explained that the city worked with MDOT, MEDC, the South Haven DDA, and local residents/business owners to plan and construct public improvements. The work included the extension of the Kal Haven Trail, into downtown South Haven, and the reconstruction of the historic Williams Street, which features prominent views of the Black River and Lake Michigan.

“In addition, the project created a variety of public space, and pedestrian friendly features that encourage biking and walking,” Dissette said. “The project has encouraged redevelopment and investment in a variety of private properties, adjacent to the construction areas.”

The 27 communities participating in this year’s CEA competition are Region 1 (southeast Michigan): Eastpointe, Linden/Fenton/Holly; Grosse Pointe, New Baltimore, Plymouth, Rochester, and Westland; Region 2 (central and southwest Michigan): Albion, Baroda/Bridgman/Berrien Springs, South Haven and St. Joseph; Region 3 (central-west Michigan): Belding and Whitehall; Region 4 (mid-Michigan): DeWitt, Ithaca and Mt. Pleasant; Region 5 (the thumb): Harbor Beach, Imlay City and Lexington; Region 6 (northern portion of the lower peninsula): Rogers City; and Region 7 (upper peninsula): Ironwood, Ontonagon, and Sault Ste. Marie. The winners from each region will now go on to compete for the statewide CEA title during the League’s Annual Convention September 18-20 in Detroit. The seven regional winners are Linden/Fenton/Holly, St. Joseph, Belding, DeWitt, Imlay City, Rogers City, and Ironwood.

The CEA program, affectionately called “The Race for the Cup,” was started by the League in 2007 to recognize innovative solutions taking place in Michigan’s communities.

For additional details contact Matt Bach, director of media relations for the Michigan Municipal League, at (734) 669-6317 or

Michigan Municipal League advocates on behalf of its member communities in Lansing, Washington, D.C., and the courts; provides educational opportunities for elected and appointed municipal officials; and assists municipal leaders in administering services to their communities through League programs and services.



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