Bike Friendly Richardson

East Dallas Veloway – Connecting Richardson To East And Downtown Dallas

Posted in Bike Change, Bike Friendly, Bike Trails and Routes by dickdavid on September 1, 2010

Last night I stopped off at the public meeting that discussed the new East Dallas Veloway Master Plan. There was a lot of detail discussed and I couldn’t catch all the specifics about phases and timing. So, I’ll just give you some of the top-line information. More details will come as we get them.

THE PLAN:
The East Dallas Veloway is a major part of the Dallas Veloweb, a network of trails designed by the City of Dallas Parks and Recreation Department. The idea is to build a “backbone” trail to connect a series of neighborhood trails. They will utilize existing city infrastructure and funding from multiple sources (including the City, County and DART) to bring another connection from northeast Dallas into downtown Dallas (via the Katy and Santa Fe Trails).

THE ROUTE:
The route will utilize the old Union Pacific railway, and create a more direct link from a northern part of the White Rock Creek Trail, just south of Forest Lane and Central, all the way to the White Rock Lake Park Hike & Bike Trail.

At the north end, via the White Rock Creek Trail, it will connect to the Cottonwood Trail – which will lead into Richardson. Half way down, it will connect with the new phases of the Katy Trail, which will lead you to downtown Dallas. At the south end, the connection with the White Rock Creek Trail will connect you with the Santa Fe Trail, which will also bring you into downtown Dallas.

TRAIL FEATURES:
The East Dallas Veloway will be built similar to the railroad route its replacing, a long, straight path with no hills or dips – just gentle slopes. The trail itself will be 14′ wide with the option of a second pedestrian path, similar to parts of the Katy Trail. There will be 5 trail heads and 11 gateways for access. The signage will be large 30′ tall structures that will be visible from multiple directions.

At this point, there are no plans for lighting. They say that it’s really expensive to install and maintain, plus it implies safety – where it may not be late at night. Also, the plan is to treat the trail like a city park, with daily closings.

Eventually, the idea is to get a group similar to the Friends of the Katy Trail to get organized and work on funding for improvements for some of these amenities.

TIMING:
UPDATE (From our friend Ron – see comment below):
The Veloway is still a long way off. Phase III will wait for the passage of an upcoming bond package of more than a million dollars from both the City of Dallas and Dallas County.  There is no budget  for Phase IV yet

UPDATE: Here’s a link from Stuart, with a copy of the presentation for anyone looking for more details: Download (pdf)

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