To follow along with the trails mentioned below, download a copy of the Raleigh greenway map here.
The first 8 miles of the the Neuse Greenway Trail is all but 20-feet finished.
That’s the official word this morning from Raleigh Senior Greenway Planner Vic Lebsock. Officially, there’s only 20 feet left to finish, on a boardwalk a little over two miles south of the northern trailhead (off the old Falls of Neuse Road). A stretch under Capital Boulevard and greenway under the new Falls of Neuse Road — both of which were under construction a month ago — have been completed, Lebsock said. That means you could start from the southern trailhead, at the WRAL/CASL Soccer Complex off Perry Creek Road between Capital Boulevard and Louisburg Road, and travel unencumbered six miles upstream.
Lebsock couldn’t say when the 20-foot gap would be finished. He could say, “We hope to have the official ribbon cutting in November.” He also could say that while the trail officially isn’t open, there sure are a lot of people have discovered the greenway and are using it.
While the 20-foot-gap issue gets resolved, construction on most of the rest of the Neuse Greenway Trail should get underway within the next two weeks. Lebsock says construction should begin from Horseshoe Creek Farm (just across the Neuse River from where the aforementioned 8-mile stretch ends) south to near the Heddingham neighborhood, and from Anderson Point south to the Johnston County Line. Two remaining mile-long stretches are expected to go to bid by January.
Lebsock says the entire 28-mile Neuse Greenway Trail — from Falls of Neuse dam south to the Johnston County line — remains on target to be finished by the end of 2012.
“We’re right on schedule,” says Lebsock
In other Raleigh greenway news:
House Creek Greenway. This much-anticipated 2.9-mile greenway will connect the city’s Reedy Creek Greenway on the west with the 11-mile-long Crabtree Creek Greenway to the east. Lebsock says construction continues all along this stretch, which essentially parallels Raleigh’s Beltline (I-440). He said “unforeseen construction problems” have delayed reopening of Glen Eden Road, under which a pedestrian tunnel has been built (the tunnel, in addition to a tunnel under Lake Boone Trail, are both finished), and work continues on a connector greenway extending from Ridge Road that links into House Creek and the Reedy Creek greenways just east of the pedestrian bridge over the Beltline.
That connector plays a key role in a seemingly unrelated greenway two miles to the west. There, a greenway less than a mile long has been built along Edwards Mill Road by the N.C. Department of Transportation linking the Reedy Creek Trail with the RBC Center. As part of the House Creek project, the gates on the pedestrian bridge over the Beltline will be removed. Those gates are locked at night to prevent access to the Meredith College campus, through which the southeastern portion of the Reedy Creek Greenway passes (a new gate will be built in the pedestrian tunnel under Wade Avenue, through which the Reedy Creek Greenway passes). Using street connectors and greenways, it will be possible for people living inside the Beltline to take the greenway to Carolina Hurricanes games and other evening events at the RBC Center.
Lebsock says the entire House Creek project should be finished by March 2012.
Crabtree Creek Greenway extension to the Neuse River. Currently, the 11-mile greenway follows its namesake creek from near Duraleigh Road downstream to Milburnie Road. This four-mile project would link the Milburnie end with the Neuse River and Neuse Greenway Trail. Lebsock says stretch will likely go to bid in January or February, with completion targeted for the second quarter of 2013. (On the northwest end, the Crabtree Creek Greenway eventually will run to Umstead State Park and hook into the park’s 18-mile bike and bridle trail network.
Walnut Creek Greenway to New Hope Road. The Walnut Creek Greenway currently runs along the south side of Raleigh, from Lake Wheeler Road east to Worthdale Park. Eventually, greenway to be built through N.C. State’s Centennial Campus will link it with the Lake Johnson Greenway to the west. To the east, four miles remain before the Walnut Creek Greenway taps into the emerging Neuse Greenway Trail. Two of those miles, from Worthdale Park to South New Hope Road, will go out to bid in 30 to 60 days, according to Lebsock. That stretch should open by the end of 2012. Funding for the remaining two miles, from South New Hope to the Neuse, rests in the fate of a $40 million transportation bond that goes before Raleigh voters Oct. 11.
Honeycutt Creek Greenway: The 6-mile Honeycutt Creek Greenway will run from Strickland Road to Falls Lake, where it will connect with the Mountains-to-Sea Trail. Lebsock says a few final approvals and permits are needed for this trail, but that it should go to bid shortly and construction should begin in January. It is expected to be finished by the end of 2012.