Parks must stay open despite cuts, state saysNovember 30, 2010
Webinar: Making New Places to Play: Joint Use Agreements Between Schools and ParksNovember 30, 2010
2011 Metro Parks Capital Improvement Projects
The 2011 Capital Improvement Budget focuses on additional trail projects, facility development (in particular the Nature Center at Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park), resource management projects, and several district-wide initiatives.
The Year in Review ‘“ 2010
In July Metro Parks assumed management of the Greenway Trails in Columbus in keeping with our levy commitments. Considerable progress has been made in improving the conditions and safety of the trails.
Progress was also achieved constructing new Greenway trails. The Blacklick Creek Greenway Trail bridge over US 33 is nearing completion and should be open in the spring. The section of the trail near Winchester Pike was completed. Portions of the Camp Chase trail are under construction. Additional trail improvements were made throughout the park system.
METRO PARKS GOALS For the Year 2011
5. Improve management and make improvements to the Greenways Trail System. Construct segments of the Ohio to Erie Trail along the Camp Chase railroad corridor. Construct Greenway trail segments along Blacklick Creek and Big Walnut Creek.
Proposed New Positions
3. Part-Time Park Ranger ‘“ Greenways ‘“ The original staffing plan for the Greenways centered on the initial takeover of the Greenways trails and the basic maintenance and patrolling of the trails. With several months of analysis, a better understanding of what is needed to manage the trail system has been developed. The addition of a part-time Park Ranger would enable the trail system to be patrolled more frequently for longer periods of time and to cover multiple sections of the trail during the same shifts. By patrolling more areas more often, visibility will be increased and safety will be enhanced resulting in an enhanced experience for the public. The projected start date for this position would be July 2011.
2011 should be an exciting year in Central Ohio as much of the efforts over the past several years will reach fruition. With the successful bidding of the last section of the Blacklick Greenway Trail and its completion in 2011, this trail will be complete and connect Blacklick Woods, Pickerington Ponds, and Three Creeks. The City of Columbus is expected to work on the last section of the Alum Creek Greenway Trail thus connecting Three Creeks with Westerville. The Camp Chase Trail will continue to be a priority. These trails are essential for providing a healthy alternative to Central Ohioans and as one of the amenities that will allow us to attract and retain employees and employers so essential to the Central Ohio economy.
Camp Chase Trail. Three related projects are included in the 2011 CIP budget including construction of a section of trail (1.6 miles) from the current terminus of the Ohio to Erie Trail in Madison County to sections of trail that Metro Parks will complete in 2010 in Lilly Chapel. Land acquisition issues have been resolved and that section of trail is being designed. Additionally, funds are budgeted to address the Alkire Road Bridge crossing that is being managed by the Franklin County Engineer. This project will involve hanging a pedestrian/bicycle bridge on the existing bridge, which is a cost effective approach to crossing Big Darby Creek. We will also begin constructing the section of the trail from Battelle Darby Creek east to Galloway. Wilson Road to Lilly Chapel $700,000
Alkire Road Bridge Improvements $600,000
Battelle Darby Creek to Galloway $1,500,000
Greenways Trails. In 2010, Metro Parks began managing the City of Columbus portions of the Greenway Trail system. As noted above, progress is being made to complete the system of trails bringing recreation opportunities closer to many in the community. Funds are earmarked to make trail improvements in sections of trail we inherited that require significant maintenance and repaving. Additionally, funds are allocated to extend the Blacklick Greenway trail through Blacklick Woods Metro Park to create a direct trail connection to Livingston Avenue, thus eliminating the need for users (walkers and bicyclists) to utilize the relatively narrow main park roadway. Additionally, consistent with a legal option we signed, the section of the proposed Big Walnut Greenway Trail that will cross the Little Turtle Golf Course must be constructed in 2011. This trail will be 1.2 miles long and go north from SR 161 to the north property line of the Little Turtle Golf Club. Finally, a 1/2 mile trail will be paved between the entrance road to Highbanks and Powell Road which will then connect into the Orange Township Trail System allowing many users to enter the park in a non-vehicular fashion. Orange Township will pay most of the cost of this last trail segment.
Greenway Trail Improvements $300,000
Blacklick Extension to Livingston Ave $335,000
Big Walnut Trail $1,000,000
Highbanks Orange Township Trail $100,000