MDOT to Continue Discussion of Transportation Improvements on October 20

The public is invited to participate in a second public open house to help define the purpose and need for road improvements within the downtown Kalamazoo Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) study area. The area includes segments of Stadium Drive, Michigan Avenue, Kalamazoo Avenue, Michikal Street, Riverview Drive, and Douglas Avenue. Comments from the initial open house are available pdf here (137 KB) .

Business owners
4 – 7 p.m.
Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016
Metro Transit Center
530 N. Rose St.

The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) is using the PEL process to determine future improvements within the downtown Kalamazoo study area: Stadium Drive between Howard Street and Michigan Avenue; Michigan Avenue between Stadium Drive and Kalamazoo Avenue; Kalamazoo Avenue between Douglas Avenue and Harrison Street; Michikal Street between Michigan Avenue and Kalamazoo Avenue; Riverview Drive between Harrison Street and Gull Road; and Douglas Avenue between West Main Street and Kalamazoo Avenue.

The PEL process is a planning tool used to streamline the project development process. It is an approach to transportation decision making that helps the community consider environmental, historical, cultural, and feasibility issues early in the transportation planning process. MDOT will share a draft document called the Purpose and Need to obtain public input that will help shape potential alternatives for addressing the transportation challenges in downtown Kalamazoo.

Residents, business owners and commuters are encouraged to attend and share ideas, suggestions and concerns as part of the planning process. The draft purpose and need was developed based on input from the first public meeting held in April 2016, will be available for public review and comment.

Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety Application Period Open Through October 23

The Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety is hiring Public Safety Officers for service beginning in May 2017. Applications may be submitted through Sunday, October 23 online ONLY at

To be considered, applicants must be U.S. citizens and have a High School Diploma or GED equivalent, a valid driver’s license, and be 21 years old at time of appointment. Applicants will also be required to pass written and physical tests, and an extensive background investigation. Applicants are not required to be MCOLES (Police) certified to apply.

Kalamazoo Public Safety Officers are cross trained as police officers, firefighters, and medical first responders. They respond to calls for police, fire, and medical emergencies, along with other duties.

Advancement/additional opportunities include Detective, Canine Handler, Community Policing Officer, Narcotics Investigator, Crime Lab Technician, SWAT Team, Bomb Squad, Honor Guard, and Command Officer, among others.

Newly hired officers start at $18.76 per hour. Those who have already received their firefighter certifications will start at $20.62 per hour. Applicants do not need to have prior police or fire certifications to be considered; KDPS will sponsor them through the police academy and provide fire training if needed. A training wage may apply to those who need to attend the Police Academy. The Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety also offers a Spanish language hiring bonus, and Public Safety Officers are eligible for veteran on-the-job training education benefits and the federal direct student loan forgiveness program.

KDPS encourages Kalamazoo-area residents to apply, and will give consideration to applicants from our community. Applicants who have lived, worked, or have been educated in urban/diverse environments or with military service will also receive additional consideration.

Information about KDPS may is available at and questions can be submitted through the “Contact” link at the top of the Home Page.

Grants awarded for educational components and restoration of the Fountain of the Pioneers Complex

Grant funding totaling approximately $ 122,250 has been awarded by the Kalamazoo Community Foundation and the Michigan Humanities Council to support the Bronson Park 21st Century campaign, including the restoration of the Fountain of the Pioneers complex and educational components to accompany it. Bronson Park forms the center of the Bronson Park National Register Historic District.

Despite Fountain of the Pioneers designer Alfonso Iannelli’s intention, his Prairie Modern masterpiece has been accused of celebrating racism. The Bronson Park 21st Century Campaign’s Public Education committee, including representatives of the local Gun Lake Band of Pottawatomi, resolved to keep the fountain with the addition of a multifaceted education effort to explore its history and Kalamazoo’s connections to Band, which is also known as the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians.

The $ 100,000 grant from the Kalamazoo Community Foundation was made to help restore the Fountain of the Pioneers complex and create and implement educational programs that treat the nationally significant Fountain sculpture as a "site of conscience" and support campaign planning and execution.

“This request aligns with KZCF’s priorities of education and equity because it supports not only the redevelopment of Kalamazoo’s Bronson Park and its Iannelli Fountain, but it provides an opportunity to elevate the marginalized voices of the Pottawatomi tribe, and gives them the ability to engage the community through the addition of an educational component that the tribe will create,” the Kalamazoo Community Foundation issued in a statement.

An approximately $ 22,250 Heritage Grant was awarded to the Kalamazoo Historic Preservation Commission by the Michigan Humanities Council to develop engaging methods to present an accurate history of American Indian occupation of the region.

“The Tribe is working with community leaders in Kalamazoo to educate the public on the real history of Kalamazoo’s first peoples and share our rich heritage,” wrote Gun Lake Tribal Councilwoman Phyllis Davis in a letter supporting the grant application. “We hope to do this through an education program and also some historical markers in each corner of the reservation.”

The Campaign’s Public Education Committee is preparing Wi-Fi-enabled kiosks to be located in Bronson Park and at corners of the 1821-1829 Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish reservation where Kalamazoo now stands. With Next Exit History internet mapping, the Pottawatomi’s own words and images will tell their story of broken Euro-American treaties, resistance to removal, cultural re-engagement and community stewardship. 

More information on the Bronson Park 21st Century Campaign and the Bronson Park Master Plan is available at

City of Kalamazoo

Home to the Kalamazoo Promise, three institutions of higher education, two nationally recognized healthcare systems, cutting-edge medical research, world-class brewing and dining, outstanding parks, and an extensive variety of music, art, theatre, and cultural attractions.


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