Milliken State Park in Detroit unveils boardwalk bridges for visitors to enjoy wetland habitats

Members of the United Auto Workers (UAW) from Ford Motor Company recently unveiled a series of boardwalk bridges, built and installed by UAW workers, to connect several small islands in the park’s wetland with the shore at William G. Milliken State Park and Harbor. The bridges are open to the public to allow access to the wetland.
James Suttles, VP of UAW-Ford National Program Center
(front row, left), Martin Malloy, VP of Labor Relations for
Ford North America (front row, right) and UAW-Ford workers
who recently built and installed boardwalk bridges at
Milliken State Park in Detroit. (DNR photo)
The work was part of a partnership between the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Ford Motor Company and its UAW members. Ford Motor Company and its UAW-Ford National Program Center have long partnered with communities and non-profit organizations on a variety of projects across Michigan.

Wetland habitats provide significant environmental benefits as they filter rainwater that contains pollutants before it drains into waterways. Natural wetlands along the Detroit River were destroyed by development long ago, but the wetland created at Milliken State Park serves as a demonstration area of what the Detroit riverfront might have looked like more than a century ago. The wetlands were designed to capture run-off from land surrounding the park.

“The addition of boardwalks and a platform viewing area will help our visitors experience and enjoy wetland habitats by allowing them to walk out to the islands and see what this area looked like before development,” said Milliken State Park Manager Anthony Casasanta. “This project will allow them to have an up-close and personal experience with the water and creatures of the riverfront.”

“This is another great example of what can be achieved through partnerships between the State of Michigan and the private sector,” commented Ron Olson, chief of the DNR Parks and Recreation Division.

Milliken State Park, located just blocks from Hart Plaza and the Renaissance Center, serves as a hub of the Detroit Riverwalk. For more information, visit or call 313-396-0217.