New Rec Trail
CONNECTING the Pieces
Running through the City of Waukesha are a number of existing trails, including the Glacial Drumlin Trail, Lake Country Trail, Meadowbrook Trail, Fox River Trail and more. These trails are a great community resource, however several of these popular trails are unconnected segments that begin and end in different areas of Waukesha. In 2012, the City of Waukesha created a Bicycle and Pedestrian Facilities Plan and began the process of working to connect these trails. This work is being done in coordination with a number of groups such as the Waukesha Bike Alliance, Waukesha County and Carroll University.
Trail Map of Phase 1
Barstow to Frederick Street Connector
As part of the Bike-Pedestrian planning process, 100 potential improvements were ranked with the Barstow to Frederick Street Connector ranked number one. The nearly complete Phase 1, creates the start of a connection between the New Berlin Trail and the Glacial Drumlin trail (map above). Phase 1 included creation of a paved 10 foot wide asphalt trail at 4,125 feet, just under one mile in length, from Barstow Street to Frederick Street. This portion of the trail is expected to be completed and open in July 2018. The approximately $391,000 project is supported in part by $241,475 in state and federal grant funding. In addition, the trail is built along a section of railroad bed with an established clear pathway and excellent trail base that helped to reduce costs. This has allowed the City to cut some material costs by up to one third, resulting in over $22,000 in savings.
East & West Connections
The goal for 2019 is to further identify and develop the best on and off road options to connect the completed Phase 1 segment to the County New Berlin Trail to the east and the State Glacial Drumlin Trail to the west. Contingent upon funding, project bidding and subsequent construction could take place as early as 2020. With the realization of the proposed Phase 2 connections, approximately 167 miles of trails will be connected and enjoyed by thousands of users annually.
- Safety: Will enable trail users to get through the City safely, in particular on the off-road trail segments. The trail is ADA compliant and road crossings are marked with a crosswalk and safety signage for trail users and drivers on the roads.
- Connecting Schools: Offers alternative safe routes to schools for Hadfield Elementary, Randall STEM School, Central Middle School, Waukesha County Technical College Downtown Campus and Carroll University.
- Economic Impact: The new trail and continued improvements to future trails, will help draw people into Waukesha and downtown. This will help support tourism and our local business community.
- Promote Healthy Lifestyles: The significant recreational value that the trail promotes (biking, walking, running, in -line skating, etc.), is good for overall public health. In addition, residents of the City will have an additional alternative to car travel that promotes a healthy lifestyle. As with other City trails, the new trail segment will be plowed in the winter to promote year-round use.
Connecting the Future
The City will not be stopping with Phase 1 and 2 of the current project. Future plans will look to realize additional trail connections, most notably opportunities to connect the County Lake Country Bike Trail and the Meadowbrook Bike Trail to other parts of the City.