ADA Railcar Project:
The initial project targeted by the society is the renovation and adaptation of a railcar with an on-board lift & handicap accessible restroom to make all of the Coopersville & Marne Railway offerings handicap accessible. Due to the historic nature of the C&M’s rolling stock, it is exempt from ADA requirements for handicap accessibility. Due to liability issues, families with physically or mentally challenged individuals must provide their own assistance with loading and unloading via the high, narrow steps onto the C&M railcars. This eliminates a great, family-friendly recreational opportunity for many families or groups with disabled individuals. In 2008 a fundraiser was completed for the initial estimated cost to provide a handicap accessible railcar and work has progressed since that time. We hope to have this project completed for operation in the 2015 season but working with all-steel construction and unknown challenges beneath the surfaces make exact predictions optimistic at best. See the ADA Railcar page for additional information and progress updates.
Spring Lake Interurban Depot Project:
The historic Spring Lake Interurban Depot was saved from destruction when it’s site was designated for a retail bank on the NE corner of Savidge and Jackson Streets in the Village of Spring Lake, MI. The building was purchased for $1 and moved to Coopersville, MI. It had several temporary locations and now is situated on the south side of Danforth Street opposite the Coopersville Area Historical Society’s building which itself was an Interurban depot, freight building and housed a transformer for electrification of the lines and rails which propelled the Interurban cars. The Spring Lake Depot is now used by the C&M as a warehouse and working office adjacent the newer C&M Engine House. Future plans are to renovate it and provide educational displays regarding the Interurban as well as railway operations. No time frame or permanent location have yet been identified for this project. Photos of the building move and additional information on this structure can be seen on the SL Depot page.