Friday, October 09, 2015
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About Ada

Nestled near the convergence of the Grand and Thornapple Rivers several miles east of Grand Rapids lies Ada Township. Here, natural scenic beauty mingles with progressive business, excellent medical, educational and cultural facilities to create an ideal place to live, work and play. Ada's scenic beauty includes gently rolling woodland terrain, meandering rivers, lush meadows, several working farmlands, and a historic Village.

Ada was founded in 1821 by fur trader Rix Robinson. The first land purchase was made in 1833, and the first plat was recorded in 857. A post office was established in 1837. Both the township and the settlement were named on behalf of Ada Smith, the daughter of the first postmaster. The early community featured a train station on the Detroit and Milwaukee Railroad (later part of the Detroit, Grand Haven and Milwaukee Railway). Over the years, Ada Township has strived to retain much of the rural charm and pristine natural beauty that originally attracted many of the community’s 10,000-plus residents to the area.

Throughout the community, signs of Ada’s rural heritage still exist, including rambling farm houses and stately horse ranches on unpaved natural beauty roads, traditional neighborhoods, a historic village, and an open landscape. Ada Township’s Master Plan allows for planned growth that preserves steep wooded slopes, open space and protects invaluable natural resources such as our waterways.

Conveniently located on M-21, just 12-miles east of the hubub of Grand Rapids, Ada Township is an unincorporated community served by a wide range of services and amenities.

Open space preservation and maintaining the rural atmosphere and small town charm rank high on the priority list for many township residents, as does support for expanding and improving public parks. Over 400 acres of township-owned property are available for use by residents--300 of which are prime riverfront acreage. Bird-watching, boating, fishing, hiking, walking, and biking are all recreational pursuits that are easily satisfied within the boundaries of Ada Township and contribute to the quality of life of citizens.

Ada Township highlights:

  • Ada Farmers Market
  • Downtown Development Authority
  • Hiking, Biking and Cross Country Ski trails
  • Parks and Recreation Areas
  • Grand and Thornapple Rivers
  • West Michigan Youth Ballet
  • Art Galleries
  • Unique Shops
  • Service Amenities
  • Historic Museum
  • Dining Choices
  • Historic Covered Bridge


  • From the North & West: Take I-96, exit on M-21 East, take M-21 to second light in front of Alticor World Headquarters, turn right into the Village.
  • From the South & East: Take I-96, exit on East Beltline (M-37) go South to M-21 (Fulton), go East on M-21 to second light in front of Alticor World Headquarters, turn right into the Village.

Ada Township Office Location Map

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Ada Township Offices 7330 Thornapple River DR P.O. Box 370 Ada, MI 49301 Phone: (616) 676-9191 Fax: (616) 676-5870 Hours: M-F, 8AM-5PM