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Archive for Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Letter: Trail network

March 27, 2013

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To the editor:

Over the last two decades, the City of Lawrence has built several attractive recreational paths in the community. Now it is time to link these separate paths to form an interconnected trail system, thereby multiplying their value. Also, trees need to be planted along the paths to provide shade for trail users and evergreens planted to screen eyesores. With a little more work, an outstanding trail network can be established that will be enjoyed by many generations to come.

People love walking, bicycling or jogging on recreational trails. Whether for exercise or just the sheer enjoyment of being outdoors, people of all walks of life enjoy recreational trails. The fact is people love trails and trails are good for the community.

Comments

none2 1 year ago

Long term the most important goal should be to get the Lawrence area hooked up with the developing network of trails in eastern Kansas. The closest trail network to the Lawrence area is the Landon Nature Trail which when finished will go 38 miles from Topeka down to around K-68 near Pamona Lake.

The easiest way to connect up Lawrence would be to expand the Clinton Lake Trails to cover the entire north side of Clinton Lake. Such a trail would need to northwestward towards Stull. Then from around the Stull area, it would need to head southwestward down towards what was once the town of Richland just over into Shawnee County. That is the area known as the Clinton Wildlife Area. If such a trail could be created from Clinton Lake to Richland, then Lawrence would be hooked up with the Landon Nature Trail, and thus be connected with the large network of trails in the area.

At the southen end of the Landon Nature Trail, it hooks up with the Flint Hills Nature Trail which when complete will be 118 miles from Herington, KS to Osawatomie, KS. That trail is ranked as the 7th longest rail-to-trail in the nation. That trail happens to hook up also with the Prairie Spirit trail which currently goes from Ottawa to Iola -- expanding to Humboldt by June 2013. (There is a wish list to get the trail to go further from Humboldt down to Chanute, but nothing on the web indicates that any action has been taken towards such a goal.)

As things currently stand with the biking network, Lawrence is completely isolated from these trails.

The draw back to such a Clinton trail is that it would not be a rail-to-trail route. Looking at county maps from the late 1800's, there were rail lines that went from Lawrence to Richland. Unfortunately, whatever remains of them, they are mostly now at the bottom of Clinton Lake -- thus the need to go around the north side of the lake to get to Richland. Since I assume non-rails-2-trails routes involve purchasing private property, it may never happen, but it would be nice if it could happen.

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spiderd 1 year ago

Clark, This is a great letter and exactly the sort of thing our city should be working on. However, the city commission has opted to tie up 20 years worth of recreation dollars into a giant rec center outside of town that aims to be both a local gym and a regional gym but will likely stumble over itself and fail to do either well.
I hope you're young enough to enjoy the paths we'll be enhancing in 20 years because that's where the money is going until then.

I do hear there will be a trail out by the rec center so I suppose in the meantime you could drive out there to go for a walk!

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Richard Heckler 1 year ago

If the trails were connected it would certainly provide safer travel, weight control and/or enjoyment at the same time. Not to mention a good exercise for the heart,knees and other joints.

Keep writing Clark and just maybe the dream will come true.

Studies Show Bike Commuting Is One of the Best Ways to Stay Healthy http://www.peopleforbikes.org/blog/entry/good_news_health_studies_show_bike_commuting_is_one_of_the_best_ways_to_sta

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Clark Coan 1 year ago

The problem is the special sales tax proceeds for recreation are now going to be all allocated to the new rec center!

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 1 year ago

Indeed-- this should be a major component of a sensible, sustainable and realistic 21st century transportation system.

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Richard Heckler 1 year ago

Absolutely!

Build trails NOT Field Houses!!!!

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