Posted by Mark Washburn on Saturday, April 1, 2017 at 10:06:50 PM By Mark Washburn / April 1, 2017 Comment
Cape Coral is set to s receive its own section of the SUNTrail in the future, with news of a $1.8 million grant for a walking and biking trail along Kismet Parkway in North Cape Coral. The trail is part of the larger SUNTrail, which stands for Shared-Use Non-motorized Trails. Essentially, this means a series of paved, multi-use trails made especially for pedestrians and bicyclists through the state. The grant comes from the Florida Department of Transportation, to be used for the preliminary design and engineering of the trail, and is just one of dozens of projects funded through the SUNTrail Program. Eventually, the plan is to connect it to a larger network of statewide SUNTrails, which some claim will help the city in further promoting a pedestrian/bike-friendly community. Plans call for constructing the trail from Del Prado Boulevard to El Dorado Boulevard, on the north side of the Kismet Parkway, and make it pass by the future site of the city’s Festival Park. It will then continue to Van Buren Parkway and on to Burnt Store Road. It’s expected that the entire trail will run for about seven miles and be about 12-feet wide. The state first officially recognized the need for such projects a couple of years ago when state legislators established the SUNTrail Program. Leaders looked at the number of paved, off-road trails that already existed in certain communities across the state, then generated a plan to connect the exiting trails, while coming up with a larger system of trails and greenways spanning the state. Spearheaded by the Florida Greenways and Trails Foundation, proponents aim to connect the state’s natural landscapes, parks and waterways, giving both residents and visitors to Florida a way to safely travel the state. It’s also hoped that the trail spurs opportunities for small businesses along the way, from rural communities to cities such as Cape Coral.
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