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42-Mile Bike Trail Proposal Is Ready To Find Funding

Groundwork Cincinnati-Mill Creek

Area bike supporters are seeking funding for a multimillion dollar plan to create a 42-mile urban loop trail. The Cincinnati Connects plan would link the city's four largest pedestrian and bike paths with six connector trails. 

Robin Corathers is with Groundwork Cincinnati and the Mill Creek Greenway Trail. "We think that it's going to be extremely beneficial for economic reasons as well as public health, recreation and the environment."

The trail would wind through 32 neighborhoods. Tom Croft with Ohio River Trail West says it will be a vital link to jobs, school, and healthcare for people in some of the city's less affluent neighborhoods.

Oasis trail supporter Rick Greiwe, a developer, says he expects two million people per year will use the trail.

A coalition of trail groups and Interact for Health released their proposal Wednesday. Corathers says the next step is raising public and private dollars and creating an aggressive  and detailed implementation strategy.

The estimated cost for the linking paths is $21 million. Money is also needed to complete portions of the four major trails, including building the Wasson Way and Oasis paths.

Interact for Health funded the study that led to the proposal. Corathers says money for the actual project will be sought through federal and state grants, city and county funds, and gifts from businesses and the community.

The plan is designed to be almost entirely off road. However, Corathers says the coalition will have to be creative in congested areas like Uptown. She says the trial is meant to mesh with existing on-street bike lanes and public transit.