Trail work marks next step for Vision 2020

Published 6:35 pm Saturday, November 3, 2012

Vision 2020 will soon show tangible results.

A segment of trail will be built in 2013 as part of the Vision 2020 goals for expanding the bike-walk trail system in Austin.

The .7 mile segment will be built at the intersection of 12th Avenue and 21st Street Northeast. It will run along the west and south edges of the Nature Center, terminating at 28th Street Northeast near the Austin Country Club. The 28th Street termination will serve as a connection point to the planned final section of Shooting Star Trail, which now connects LeRoy, Taopi, Adams and Rose Creek.

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“This trail area is very important because we expect the Shooting Star Trail to connect with the Austin trail soon,” said Steve Kime, chair of the Vision 2020 Bike-Walk Committee. “They are excited to complete the last few miles.”

The trail project will cost $330,000 and is being funded by a federal Transportation Enhancement grant and a $55,000 anonymous donation. The city of Austin will contribute staff time from the city engineer’s office.

The city of Austin has been working from a long-term bike trail plan and has been acquiring property, applying for grant funds and completing segments of trail for seventeen years. The Bike-Walk Committee has endorsed the planned trails as one of the goals of their group and will help to find funding and otherwise support the construction as needed. The comprehensive plan is designed to provide bike access to major employers, shopping areas and attractions. The first bike trail in the city was the Mill Pond loop, completed in 1995.

The next trail segment construction is planned for 2015 in southwest Austin starting near the bandshell. The City of Austin will also be adding bike lanes to cities streets in late 2012 which will address another goal of the Bike-Walk Committee.