Mader: "Overwhelming support" for citywide pathway at public meeting

Close to 50 people attended a public information meeting Tuesday evening on a new citywide pathway with the overwhelming majority in support of the project according to Scottsbluff Parks Director Perry Mader.

Mader says the preliminary design plans for the nearly six mile pedestrian/bicycle trail and associated pedestrian bridge over Highway 26 were greeted as a "great first step" by most of those in attendance, who wanted even more trails in the future. Mader says there were a lot of questions and there were a few people who were concerned about foot traffic around their properties.

The $3 million project, funded 80% by federal funds,would begin at the existing Monument Valley Pathway trail near the Riverside Park and Zoo and extend north along the west side of Scottsbluff using Avenue V, 20th Street and Avenue I. The trail would then turn east and parallel Highway 26, crossing the highway with a grade separated bridge at 2nd Avenue and extend north to 37th Street and Regional West Medical center. The project will not extend to the Landers Soccer complex as originally proposed.

Another segment of the proposed trail would cross Highway 26 with an at grade crossing along 5th Avenue and extend east to Western Nebraska Community College. Mader says construction is planned to start in 2016.

Project information will also be available at an online, self-directed meeting. The online meeting can be accessed by visiting www.ScottsbluffValleyPathway.hdrpi.com. Public comments will be accepted until July 11, 2013.

The purpose of the Scottsbluff Valley Pathway North Project is to provide a safe, alternative transportation option for the residents of Scottsbluff that connects and expands existing pedestrian/bicycle facilities, while increasing access to neighborhoods, parks and businesses.

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