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City Seeks Feedback on Scioto Trail Extension, Quarry Trails Connection

Brent Warren Brent Warren City Seeks Feedback on Scioto Trail Extension, Quarry Trails ConnectionThis former railroad bridge could be used to connect the new trail section to the Quarry Trails development and Metro Park. Photo by Walker Evans.
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The Columbus Recreation and Parks Department is seeking feedback on a future trail extension that would fill in a key gap in the trail network while also connecting it to the new Quarry Trails Metro Park.

The Scioto Trail currently runs from the South Side to West Fifth Avenue, winding its way through Downtown along the way.

The new proposal calls for extending the trail past Fifth Avenue so that it connects up with the new park and also – eventually – with the Dublin shared path network and the Heritage Rail Trail, which starts in Hilliard and goes all the way to Plain City.

The city has posted a survey and a presentation about different possible routes online. The alternatives for the new trail are broken into two segments – one that extends from Fifth Avenue to Trabue Road, and another that continues north of Trabue to Griggs Dam.

The northern section would provide access to the Quarry Trails Metro Park and adjacent development, both of which are currently under construction. Two of the proposed routes would provide that access via an abandoned rail bridge that crosses the Scioto River.

The company behind the development, Thrive Companies, has committed to building a trail from the bridge to the park, and also a section of trail along the west side of the Scioto.

“We’re excited about it,” said Steve Bollinger of Thrive Companies. “It could be the connecting piece to so much more….from Plain City to Downtown, to the Scioto Audubon [Metro Park], and you could be on a trail the entire time.”

Bollinger said that infrastructure work is still ongoing for the first phase of the development, which will include a mix of single family homes, apartments, and commercial space, as well as a community center. Also underway is a traffic study for the larger area.

Bollinger added that he expects work to start in September on the apartments, and hopes to see the first products come online by next spring or summer.

That could also be the timeline for the Metro Park’s opening – although parks officials initially were aiming for a portion of the park to open in late 2020, it now appears that that has been pushed back.

Steve Studenmund, Metro Park’s Strategic Planning/Land Acquisition Manager, said that the work being done now is mostly soil and stormwater improvements, and that work has not yet started on the park’s public facilities.

In other trail news, Central Ohio Greenways is also looking for respondents to a more general survey on trail use on its website.

Comments on the Scioto Trail extension need to be submitted by September 4, click here for more information.

A map of the study area for the proposed Scioto Trail extension. Maps via Columbus Recreation and Parks Department.
Alternative routes for the southern portion of the trail, between Fifth Avenue and Trabue Road.
Possible trail routes north of Trabue Road., where work has begun on a new Metro Park and a development featuring homes, apartments, offices and retail space.
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