November 8, 2011

Maintaining Bike Paths

Mutli-use trails are a great method to commute for bikers. Sure, there are too many pedestrians and performance bicyclists who have to pass you, but sometimes it’s nice to not have to deal with motorists. And the good thing about Central Ohio is that there is a pretty good network of current and planned trails.

One of the newer additions is the Hilltop-Scioto Connector. It's an interesting connection because the trail that it connects to terminates at Grandview Avenue, which isn't very useful. Fortunately, one day the Scioto trail will reach downtown. Overall, it's a pretty nice bridge which includes a beautiful view of downtown Columbus as well as a car salvage yard. Win-win.
Hilltop-Scioto Bridge - Poorly taken photo by me
What I worry about, however, is that the City will not maintain the trails. The Scioto trail has leaves along the path. Not terrible but it is still a slight hazard, especially since you cannot see the condition of the asphalt.

Lots of leaves
A larger concern than leaves though is the erosion that is taking place. The underbelly of I-670 has surface drainage being spit onto the trail and without much force dampening, the trail is becoming eroded. Although the trail is not used that much now, it's likely that it would see many more users once the trail becomes connected to downtown. At that time, it'd be nice for there to still be a trail to ride.

I-670 Drainage
More erosion

The last observation from my trip along the trail is that it appears that they are making progress on providing access to Grandview Avenue without having to get off of your bike. This is a welcomed improvement although I still wonder how bicyclists will ultimately get onto Grandview Ave.

The left side is where the path currently ends. Before, this dirt path was
 unavailable and bikers had to get off their bikes and go over the curb.
I've submitted a 311 request regarding the erosion problem so we'll see what happens.

Next time: Biking around town

Cool link of the day: Triple Decker Bike

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