The City of Auburn Hills is one of Southeast Michigan’s leading communities. Its’ visionary, long-term thinking has helped to evolve the town from a small, rural hamlet to a thriving center of higher education, commerce, entertainment, and international business, mainly in the past two decades. As part of that evolution, in 2002, the City developed a plan for the Village Center, the historic heart of the community, and began to implement a new Downtown Core at the location of the first settlement in the township -- the intersection of Squirrel Road, Auburn Road, and the Clinton River.
The Village Center area is blessed with three wonderful park sites that include significant reaches of the Clinton River. Immediately adjacent to the Downtown Core, Riverside Park dates to 1977. The City subsequently acquired and developed Riverwoods Park at the southeast corner of the Squirrel Road/M-59 interchange. The notion of connecting the three parks with a river walk trail first emerged over twenty years ago. It eventually became clear that a complete network of open space oriented to the river could serve as the primary amenity for the Village Center, support the uses in the Downtown Core, and to a larger degree, benefit the entire community. This vision underscores the need for a comprehensive,overall plan for the Auburn Hills Riverwalk, the basis of this document.
Auburn Hills has created this Riverwalk Master Plan, which is intended to guide the development and long-term operations of the entire river corridor and public realm in the Village Center and along the Clinton River. In the spirit of Auburn Hills’ legacy of farsighted planning, it is a long-term vision for a sustainable community, which links the health and beauty of the River and the environment with the vitality of the Village Center neighborhoods, the businesses in the Downtown Core, and ultimately the citizens of Auburn Hills, now and in the future.