The Federal Transportation Alternatives Program has approved $2 million to help fund the connection of Gravois Greenway (also known as Grant’s Trail) to River des Peres Greenway.
Gravois Greenway is the busiest in the Great Rivers Greenway’s River Ring System, with an estimated 560,000 users each year. East-West Gateway Coordinating Council recommended the project for federal funding based on a significant amount of public interest in connecting the two greenways.
“It’s our most-asked question when we’re doing outreach around town,” said Emma Klues, director of communications and outreach for Great Rivers Greenway. “We are so excited to be able to deliver this asset. We know it will be used and loved so we’re just excited to make this happen.”
To ensure the safety of greenway users, project plans include bridges at Bayless and River des Peres, as well as a tunnel to cross Weber Road. According to Klues, engineering work will be done this year, with construction starting in summer 2017. The greenway extension is expected to open in 2018. When complete, the connected greenways will encompass approximately 24 miles of trails and will help to connect communities, rivers and parks for bicyclists and pedestrians. The project is also expected to help move about 100 commuters from cars to bicycling.
“It doesn’t sound like much, but every little bit helps,” Klues said.
Great Rivers Greenway works to connect people to their parks and rivers through a network of greenways in St. Louis City, St. Louis County and St. Charles County.
“We love that the greenways give people an opportunity to explore and connect with our rivers, our communities and our regions, and we’re excited to be able to add one more,” Klues said.
Great Rivers Greenway is gathering information from greenway users about their experiences on all local greenways. Those interested may complete a brief online survey at greatriversgreenway.org/survey by March 14 to help Great Rivers Greenway determine future improvements for local trails.