Bikers hope for trail expansion

3 years 10 months 2 weeks ago Saturday, April 04 2015 Apr 4, 2015 Saturday, April 04, 2015 1:22:00 PM CDT April 04, 2015 in News
By: Tiege Dooley-Panko, KOMU 8 Reporter

COLUMBIA - Bikers blazed the MKT trail Saturday as GetAbout Columbia's first ride of the spring season. 

Riders could be able to access even more destinations if Columbia City Council and the Parks and Recreation department decide to expand the trail system. Many riders agree this would make it easier to get around Columbia. Gina Overshiner is a ride leader for GetAbout Columbia and said she thinks expansion is a great idea. 

"The GetAbout Columbia ride leaders and people with parks and recreation are definitely in favor of expanding our trail system to help people get out, be more active, enjoy Columbia and just get around by bicycle," Overshiner said. "Either for recreation and fun or just as a way to get about in your daily life like going to work or running errands." 

"Making the trail more interconnected for everybody helps make Columbia more accessible, biking or walking, however they want to get around." Currently the city has an existing trailhead behind Clyde Wilson Memorial Park next to Rollins Street.

Some Columbia City Council members want to connect trails between Stephens Lake Park and the Grindstone Nature Area from that trail.

The city put together four different proposals for the trail with varying amount of new construction and connections to previous trails.

1. The first option would be to connect the trail off of Rollins Street to Buffdale Drive
2. The second option would be to link the existing trailhead off of Rollins Street to a roadside park off of Old Highway 63 which would connect to the Grindstone Nature Area
3. The third option would be to develop a trail running next to Hinkson Creek to Stadium Boulevard
4. The final option would be to create a sidewalk or path next to Stadium Boulevard from Old Highway 63 to Ashland Road

GetAbout hosts a "secret access" MKT trail ride once every month to introduce new cyclists to Columbia's trail system. Ride leaders guide cyclists on an 11 mile ride highlighting trail connections to popular retail and residential areas, as well as areas to the Hinkson Creek and county House Branch trails. 

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