Public listening session Sept. 20 re: Grand Prix agreement renewal for Belle Isle

Opportunity to provide feedback at a meeting, or comment via email. 
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Statewide DNR News

Sept. 8, 2017

Contact: Scott Pratt, 313-396-6870

DNR hosts Sept. 20 public listening session regarding Detroit Grand Prix agreement renewal for Belle Isle

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources will host a public listening session Wednesday, Sept. 20, to gather public feedback on the Detroit Grand Prix – a race that has been held periodically at Belle Isle Park since 1992, and every year since 2012. A new agreement, which would allow the island to be utilized for future Grand Prix events, currently is under consideration by the DNR. 

The meeting will start at 6 p.m. at the Belle Isle Nature Center, 176 Lakeside Drive, in Belle Isle Park. The public listening session will begin with a brief Grand Prix overview, followed by public comments and a look at next steps. Each speaker will have two minutes to present his or her comments. Written comments also will be accepted via email at through Sept. 22.

The current five-year Detroit Grand Prix agreement with the City of Detroit was in place and honored by the DNR when the department assumed management of the island in February 2014. The agreement is set to expire this year and the DNR is considering the potential renewal of that agreement with input from area residents, business owners, stakeholders and others interested in outdoor recreation opportunities and events on Belle Isle.

"Public input is a critical step in evaluating the renewal of the agreement with the Grand Prix to use Belle Isle as an event venue, and we want to ensure that everyone’s opinions and ideas are heard," said Ron Olson, DNR Parks and Recreation Division chief.

Following the Sept. 20 meeting and the Sept. 22 comment deadline, the DNR will review feedback regarding the proposed five-year agreement. If the discussion moves forward and a proposed agreement is drafted, it will be made available for public review. The DNR also would offer an additional public forum to provide an opportunity for public feedback on the terms of the proposed agreement, prior to a decision to enter into an agreement being made by the DNR Parks and Recreation chief. 

Belle Isle Park, a 982-acre island park located in the Detroit River near downtown Detroit, is rich with natural beauty and historical and cultural resources. The park – managed as Michigan’s 102nd state park – is home to the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory, the Belle Isle Aquarium, a golf course, the James Scott Memorial Fountain and many more attractions popular with all ages and interests. The park offers a variety of outdoor activities, including hiking, bicycling, kayaking and picnicking, as well as community events including the Detroit Ford Fireworks, Senior Power Days, an annual spring cleanup, the Detroit YMCA’s Detroit Swims program and fitness walks and other programs

For more information about the Sept. 20 meeting, contact Scott Pratt, DNR chief of Southern Michigan Field Operations, at 313-396-6870 or

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to

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