Eliason Trailhead Pavilion-Portage, Michigan
The City of Portage is a leader in non-motorized facilities such as on-street bike lanes and off-street trails. The City of Portage's Park System includes Eliason Nature Preserve, a generously donated 123-acre tract of land that offers a peaceful sanctuary amid new housing, highways, and an increase in population. The Preserve includes a 1.6-mile non-motorized pathway, ideal for biking or strolling through the leafy, wooded area. To serve users of the preserve, the City of Portage contracted Wightman to develop a trailhead which would set design standards for the City moving forward.
The project included construction of a 1,000-square-foot covered pavilion with connected restroom facilities, water fountains with bottle fillers, and ample parking. Wightman partnered with ICON Structures to create a custom pavilion that featured detailed stone columns and façade for the structure. The project also included improved drainage for the site and a pathway to the pavilion.
The pavilion creates a perfect space to enjoy budding trees in spring, shoulder-warming summer sunshine, the kaleidoscope of colored leaves in the fall, and softly falling winter's snow, and provides a respite when biking or hiking along the trail.