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Arbor Hills Nature Area

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2014 arbor hills.png Park Address: ​3580 Bur​bank Drive, Ann Arbor ​MI 48105

Ho​​​​​urs and Rules

Open 6 a.m.-midnight with quiet hours beginning at 10 p.m. Refer to Chapter 39 of the City of Ann Arbor Code of Ordinances for park regulations and rules. Smoking is prohibited and dogs must be on leash.   

Overview

Arbor Hills Nature Area is a wedge of woods and wetlands in the northeast corner of the city, between Green Road and US-23 (see Ann Abor Parks and Nature Area map for location context). Althought one of the smaller natural areas in the city, just under 6 acres, it has some special features that are rare in the parks. At the west end, the park includes a portion of a small buttonbush swamp, in the middle, the woods are at least 70 years old, and at the east end there is a vernal pool.  The wetlands here are part of a complex of seasonal pools and permanent ponds in the area.​

The original 1998 botanical survey of the park found two tree species of special note in Arbor Hills Nature Area. Near the path that cuts through the middles of the park, there is a flowering dogwood, a small understory tree with beautiful white flowers. there is also a swamp white oak, a much larger tree near the vernal pool east of the path. Swamp white oak and flowering dogwood are both at the norther edge of their range in southern Michigan, and both are considered to indicate a relatively undisturbed habitat.   

 A trail leads hikers through woods rich with spring wildflowers​.  Expect mud if the weather is especially wet, but a boardwalk and small bridge will keep your feet free from most of the mud. Several wetlands support populations of frogs.  In fact, Arbor Hills is one of the best spots in the city to listen for tree frogs!  There is a small metal sculpture hiding along the side of one of the main trails. The north part of the nature area has a large grassy field that is flat and has one picnic table. Kilburn Park and Sugarbush Park​ are each an 8 minute walk from Arbor Hills Nature Area.  To read more about Arbor Hills and the Natural Area Preservation newsletter article that expands on the above information, view 2016 Park Focus: Arbor Hills Nature Area by George Hammond.

Access and Parking

It is best to review a map before heading out to explore Arbor Hills Nature Area. The park address of 3580 Burbank will lead you to a trail head but does not offer parking.  Arbor Hills Nature Area is tucked inside private neighborhoods so the nearest public street parking is located at Gettysburg Road, where you can walk across Green at the crosswalk and enter at the Burbank trail head. ​​​

To enter by foot, there are three entrances into the Arbor Hills Nature Area, each designated by a park sign. The north entrance offers trail access at the end of Ashburnam Road.  The west entrance is located on Green Road, between Kilburn Circle and Burbank Drive.  And the south entrance off of Burbank Drive, is located within the Chapel Hill neighborhood.  View the trails map​ to get a visual of these trail head locations. 

Public Transportation:  There are AATA bus stops on both sides of Green Road that provide access to Arbor Hills Nature Area.  Traveling westbound on Green Road, the (Green & Gettysburg) stop is a 2-minute walk. Traveling eastbound on Green Road, the (Green & Gettysburg) stop is a 3-minute walk. Check out theride.org for route and schedule details or view the parks ride guide for tips on visiting parks by bus. 


Arbor Hills Aerial.PNG

Amenities List​

  • View the asset map for park boundaries and picnic table location.
  • Hiking trails
  • No public restrooms available​

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Volunteer

There are ongoing and limitless opportunities for volunteering and getting engaged with the Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation Services Unit. Natural Area Preservation has volunteer opportunities that support their mission to protect and restore Ann Arbor's natural areas and to foster an environmental ethic among its citizens. If you are feeling the tug to volunteer or give some time, reach out or explore the website above to see what’s upcoming or how to get involved.​​​

Report a Problem - A2 Fix It

To report any maintenance issues or other problem during your park visit, please report through A2Fix It.  When reporting an issue in a park please include location details. There is a details and description section near the end of the request process to help you provide this. In addition, users can utilize the pin (website) or X (mobile app) feature to provide specific location information inside the park. Finally, please consider including a wide angle photo or include background landmarks, which helps staff find and fix the problem.

Gifts and Donations 

Information on donating to the parks and the Guide to Giving can be found here​. For special projects ideas in natural areas, Natural Area Preservation​ staff will guide you and provide project guidelines unique to natural areas.​​​


 Updated May ​2021. Email [email protected] for incorrect/outdated information.​​
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