Longview plans to interconnect bike trails - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Longview plans to interconnect bike trails

Just one of several Longview multi-purpose trails. Just one of several Longview multi-purpose trails.

The city of Longview is about to get much more friendly towards those who like to get around under their own power. They are moving towards interconnecting existing multi-use trails so walkers and bikers will have a safer way around town.

Getting around Longview on foot or bike can be a challenge. The rules of the road are about the same for bikes and cars. But Longview has addressed that with several trails exclusively for the self-propelled. 

Andy Davidson pretty much grew up on two wheels, and he says he won’t stop pedaling now that he’s started back up again.

“Just getting out, you know, and feeling the wind and hearing the trees. My wife and I and my kids go riding quite a bit. It’s just something we love to do,” Davidson said.

The Paul G. Boorman trail gets a lot of use from people like Andy, but he feels expanding it would make Longview more attractive.

“Get people to come from the surrounding areas and towns for the trail now. Expanding it would only increase that, I’m sure,” Davidson said.

Karen Owen, Transportation Planning Manager for Longview, says there are new sidewalks being put in in Longview, and there’s a plan for connecting present trails.

“We want to be able to have a road map in this bicycle and pedestrian master plan to lay out plans, policies and programs to how we can achieve becoming a more bicycle friendly, walkable community,” Owens said.

She says a consultant will help the city identify solid, quick, inexpensive fixes first.

“If we could re-pave some existing roadways, and re-pave perhaps some bike lanes,” Owen stated.

And eventually, there will be a ten-mile interconnected trail. Andy says he’s used the Boorman trail three times this week.

“And it’s what, Tuesday?” he laughed.

So you know Andy’s in it for the long haul. He says riding neighborhoods are nice, but the trails are better.

The Longview City Council will vote this Thursday, April 27, on awarding a contract with Toole Design Group to develop a comprehensive Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan for the City of Longview. The city has called for a public hearing on May 4 for input on the project.

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