The new western expansion of the Rotary Riverfront Trail may look ready to open, but that’s not the case.
Parks and Recreation Director Darren Dunkle said there’s still some work to be done at the site before people can use the trail. He estimates the new trail will be open sometime in the spring of 2018.
Dunkle said he’s heard from several people who think that, with the asphalt in place, the trail should be open for business. Despite the trail itself being done, he said there’s still more work to do.
Crews are working on backfilling around the trail and making things safer. Dunkle said crews need to add guardrails and handrails at certain spots along the trail.
The parks department also is working on getting signs needed for the trail. Additionally, winter weather will slow down work on the site, pushing the opening date back.
There’s a chance the trail could open sooner, but Dunkle said he’s being conservative and telling people they’ll have to wait until the spring.
Gateway Design and Construction Services, Valley Park, recently finished the asphalt work for the trail. The contract will pay the company $106,400.
The contract called for 4 inches of MoDOT-quality asphalt. The trail is 12 feet wide and about 1 mile long.
The trail is located to the west of the current trail. The city purchased land in 2015 and decided to use the property for a new trail.
The land purchase gave the city all the land along the Missouri River, from South Point west to St. John’s Creek.
The new trail extends west from the end of Elbert Drive across the former Rau and Politte properties. The trail “snakes” around the 42-acre parcel of undeveloped land and around the 12.4 acres of wetlands on the site.
The trail runs along the northern boundary of the site near the Missouri River and then winds through a forest heading west where it would cross an existing culvert bridge.
The trail then loops around an existing agricultural field near the confluence of St. John’s Creek, the Missouri River and the City Park Creek.