A Japanese garden including a pavilion and 17 flowering cherry trees will be constructed at Michigan State University’s Tollgate Farm and Education Center in Novi. Located at 28115 Meadowbrook Rd., the ceremonial launch for The Sakura Garden project will take place tomorrow from 2-4 p.m.
Oakland County is home to more than 270 Japanese-owned businesses, making Japan the largest source of foreign direct investment in the county. Economic developers from Oakland County also travel to Japan at least once annually to highlight, promote, and visit with Oakland County-based companies with overseas operations, as well as encourage Japanese companies to launch or grow their North American operations in Oakland County.
“I am honored to be present for the launch of the Sakura Garden project in Novi,” says Mitsuhiro Wada, Consul General of Japan in Detroit. “It is my hope that when the garden is completed, it will be a place where Japanese and American families congregate to enjoy cherry blossoms together.”
The $150,000 Sakura Garden Project is the result of a partnership between MSU, the Japanese Consulate of Detroit, the Japanese Business Society of Detroit, the City of Novi, and the Oakland County Department of Economic Development and Community Affairs.
“We wanted to create a destination that will last for generations and can be enjoyed by everyone,” says L. Brooks Patterson, Oakland County Executive. “We have warm relationships with Japan and the many Japanese companies that operate here. This project just adds to the quality of life that makes our county so attractive.”
The project, in which Oakland County has donated $10,000, is expected to be completed by summer 2018, when Michigan will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of its sister-state relationship with Japan’s Shiga Prefecture.